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Zombi 2 (1979)
Title: Zombi
Directed by: Lucio Fulci
Written by: Elisa Briganti; Dardano Sacchetti
Produced by: Fabrizio De Angelis; Ugo Tucci
Music by: Girogio Tucci; Fabio Frizzi
Cinematography: Sergio Salvati
Edited by: Vincenzo Tomassi
Distributed by: Variety Film Production
Released: August 25th, 1979 (Italy)
July 18th, 1980 (US)
Rating: R
Running time: 91 min.
Country: Italy
Language: Italian (English dubbed)
Budget: ITL 410,000,000
Gross: ITL 614,000,000
Next: Zombi 3 (1988)

Zombi 2 is an Italian horror film of the zombie sub-genre. It was directed by Lucio Fulci and produced by Variety Film Production. It was released theatrically in Italy on August 25th, 1979 and is generally well-received among horror fans for its visceral imagery and comparitive compatibility to the American "Living Dead" series developed by visionary filmmaker George Romero. It is also the film that turned Lucio Fulci's flailing movie career around and firmly established him as a horror film icon. It was followed in 1988 by Zombi 3, which Fulci partially directed. In this film, Tisa Farrow plays Anne Bowles, a young woman who is searching for her father whom she had not heard from in more than three months. Joining up with reporter Peter West, the two trace her father's trail to a tropical island where a scientist named Doctor David Menard struggles to save a village from a zombie infestation.

Plot Edit

Zombie in New York Edit

Fat zombie 001

A sailing vessel, seemingly adrift, floats in to State Island. Two members of the Harbor patrol pull up alongside it and find the wheelhouse of the boat to be an utter mess. One officer finds a severed hand and is repulsed. An overweight, decaying zombie emerges and bites him on the neck. As the man lies dying, the zombie goes topside where the second cop fires several shots at him until he falls into the water.

Back in the New York, a newspaper editor assigns reporter Peter West the job of investigating the harbor patrol officer's report.

Anne Bowles is likewise investigating the mystery of the sail boat as it had belonged to her father, a scientist who journeyed to the Antilles Islands three months ago to do some research. She has not heard from him since.

At the coroner's office, the chief medical examiner examines the dead harbor patrol officer. The assistant coroner, James, and he conduct an analysis to determine cause of death, but the M.E. is distracted when James hands him an unsterile scalpel. Neither of them notices the body begin to twitch.

That evening, Anne sneaks onto her father's boat. She is surprised to find Peter West on the boat as well, scoping out the scene for information for his story. She explains how the vessel is her father's boat and that she needs to find out what happened to him. A harbor patrol officer comes upon them, so Peter and Anne pretend that they are just a young married couple making out. The officer decides not to arrest them for trespassing on a crime scene and shoos them away. Anne shows Peter that she found a letter written by her father on the boat. The letter gives hints of a strange, radical virus that is affecting the people of the island of Matoul in the Antilles. Peter tells his editor about Anne's letter and the editor finances a charter to take them to Matoul to learn more.

Off to the Antilles Edit

Zombie vs. shark

Zombie vs. shark!

On the island of Matoul, scientist Doctor David Menard tries to make radio contact with the mainland. The only thing coming back over the radio is static and Menard grows frustrated. His wife, Paola, having been forced to live in relative isolation on the island for many months has reached her limit and goes into a fit of hysterics. Menard tries to calm her down and coaxes her to rest, but she will not let up. Ultimately, David is forced to slap her. He then goes off to the hospice/chapel where he has been conducting his work and begins examining a sample of his own blood.

Peter West hires a boat captained by a young man named Brian Hull and his lover Susan Barrett. They sail off towards the Antilles, but Brian tells them that he has never heard of Matoul, but warns that there are several uncharted islands in this region.

Susan decides that she wants to go scuba diving. She pulls off her top and dons her equipment and dives off the boat. While exploring the various undersea fauna and coral, she is surprised to see a shark bearing down on her position. Susan tries to hide behind a large outcropping of rock only to suffer an even more intense surprise - an underwater zombie! Susan frantically swims away and the zombie sets his sights on the shark. He bites down on the animal, but the shark returns the favor by chewing off the zombie's arm. Susan manages to get back aboard the boat to tell Brian and the others what she experienced.

Island attack! Edit

Fulci zombie 001

Zombie attack!

Back at the Menard residence Paola takes a shower to calm her nerves. Afterward, she takes a pill then begins to hear strange noises coming from the other room. A zombie has broken into her home and is trying to make his way into the bedroom. Paola screams and slams the door on the zombie's hand, severing its fingers. The zombie pounds upon the door until the paneling begins to burst. He reaches through and grabs Paola's head, pulling it forward until a splinter from the door stabs her through the eye.

While all of this is taking place, Doctor Menard decides to vent his frustration by getting drunk. His attending nurse comes down to the beach to tell him that another patient has died. Forlorn, Menard goes back to the hospice where he shoots the enshrouded body in the head to prevent it from coming back to life.

The ship carrying Brian, Susan, Peter and Anne drifts up to Catfish Bay and they meet Doctor Menard. Anne explains the situation and tells him about her father. Doctor Menard recalls recent events where Doctor Bowles had been a colleague of his until he succumbed to the same disease that had been slowly infesting the other islanders. Unable to help him, Doctor Menard was forced to shoot him.

Doctor Menard returns to the hospice to take care of more patients before they rise from their death beds. The rest of the group make their way to the doctor's house. As they enter, they find several zombies eating the remains of the now-dead Paola. The zombies turn their sights on the group, but they manage to drive them off.

They take Menard's car and race down an uneven dirt road. Pete hits a zombie crossing the path and the car veers off the road into the underbrush. The accident is minor, but it is enough to disable the vehicle as well as slicing a severe gash across Peter's ankle. The four of them make their way into the nearby woods where Brian spots several old crosses sticking up out of the ground. He surmises that this must be an old burial ground for Spanish Conquistadors. Several of the grave markers are more than four-hundred years old.

One by one, zombies begin to rise from the shallow earth. One of them attacks Susan, biting her on the throat. Pete decapitates it and they run off. More zombies continue to rise and shamble towards the open road. Before long, they make their way to the main thoroughfare leading back to the hospice.

Final showdown Edit

Zombies on fire

Zombies on fire.

As voodoo drums play off in the background, Pete, Anne and Brian make their way back to the hospital. Working quickly and in desperation, they begin boarding up all of the doors and windows. One of them begins to break through, but Pete bashes it with a shovel.

For all their hard work however, there is still the matter of zombies who were already inside the building. One of them attacks Doctor Menard and tears a chunk of flesh out of his cheek. Brian comes in and shoots the zombie first in the chest, then the head.

In the sick room, several islanders begin to rise as zombies. They kill one of the attending orderlies and then attack Menard's nurse. Brian comes in and shoots them. He beckons the nurse to follow him into the adjacent room, but one zombie comes up and kills the nurse.

As more and more zombies continue to break through the doors and windows, Pete, Brian and Anne gather together some weapons and kerosene. They light torches and begin throwing them at the zombies. The room erupts into flames and they engage in a prolonged shootout with the monsters. As their ammunition begins to run low, they make a break for it and run out into the night.

Brian comes upon Susan, now a zombie, in the middle of the woods. He is traumatized to see her and stands motionless. Susan bites him on the arm and Brian recoils in pain. Pete and Anne catch up to them and Brian begs them to put Susan out of her misery. Pete shoots her in the head.

Escape Edit

Pete and Anne help Brian make it back to the boat. Brian is in intense agony. As night turns to morning, Brian begins to feel severely ill. He doesn't want to become one of those things and expects Pete to put him out of his misery. Brian dies from his injuries, but Pete is reluctant to destroy him. He tells Anne that he will secure him below deck. They will take him back to New York and present him as proof of what they had experienced.

As the boat gets closer to New York City, Pete turns on the radio. He hears the voice of a frantic newscaster declaring that a state of national emergency has been called and that hordes of zombies have now taken over the city. As they get closer to the mainland, crowds of zombies can be seen shambling across the Brooklyn Bridge.

Cast Edit

Notes & Trivia Edit

  • Alternatively known as Zombie and Zombie 2: The Dead are Among Us in the US distribution market.
  • The tagline for this film is, "When the earth spits out the dead, they will rise to suck the blood of the living!".
  • The DVD includes audio commentary by actor Ian McCulloch, who played Peter West, and Jason J. Slater of Diabolik magazine. The DVD also includes theatrical trailers, television and radio spots.
  • The dialogue for this film was spoken in English by the cast members, but re-dubbed by voiceover artists for release in the US market.
  • The film actually begins with a scene of Doctor Menard shooting a clothed zombie. This scene chronologically takes place later in the film, but sets up the tone of the movie in the beginning.
  • First film to feature a zombie fighting a shark; quite a landmark if ever there was one.
  • The name of the boat at the beginning of the film is the Mornin Lady II.
  • The serial number on Brian Hull's boat is ER12858CH

See also Edit

Gallery Edit

External Links Edit

References Edit

Antilles Islands; Catfish Bay; Central America; Coroner; Cross; David Menard; Eye injuries; Harbor patrol; Matoul; Mornin Lady II; New York City; New York; Nurse; Paola Menard; Severed hand; Sharks; Staten Island; Zombies

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