Movie Review: Battle of the Damned (2013)
Synopsis: After a zombie-like viral outbreak results in an Asian city being quarantined, private mercenary Maj. Max Gatling is hired to lead a team and rescue the daughter of a wealthy industrialist before the city is firebombed. The mission is a failure, with only one other member of his team surviving, but Gatling decides to stay behind and find the girl himself. Fortunately, he has some unexpected help from a group of robots.
Who's in it? The movie stars Dolph Lundgren, Melanie Zanetti, Matt Doran, David Field and Lydia Look.
Review: OK, I'll admit it, the only reason this movie even made my list was the fact it had both zombies and robots. It was an intriguing combination and, even though I still had some doubts about the film overall, was just unique enough for me to give it a try. My wife and I watched it last night and, overall, I have to say it was an OK film.
I think the thing I liked best about this movie was the fact it wasn't as predictable as zombie films tend to be. Gatling's (Lundgren) mission seemed fairly hopeless. Even if he could have convinced the girl, Jude (Zanetti) to leave her group of friends behind, giving them the best chance to pull it off, the city was surrounded by a seemingly impenetrable blockade. They also couldn't just wait the virus out because of plans to destroy the city.
His discovery of the robots was a nice touch and, as I expected, added an interesting and entertaining element to the movie. I especially liked how the movie made the robots a significant help but, at the same time, established an element of danger by pointing out they once malfunctioned and started killing people at random. This had me wondering if Gatling and his group would wind up fighting the robots as well as the zombies.
Another thing I liked about this film was the way there weren't any significant bad guys to bog down what was actually a simple but solid plot. Yes, one of the characters, Duke (Field) might be able to be described in this capacity. However, I didn't really think of him as a villain, just a guy who had seen a lot of his comrades get killed trying to escape the city and was trying to protect the remaining survivors. And, to be fair, Gatling technically never did prove he had a plan to get Jude out of the city, he just got lucky a few times.
Final Opinion: I wouldn't necessarily describe it as a great movie but it was an entertaining zombie film with a nice robotic twist. I'd recommend taking the time to watch it.
My Grade: B
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