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Doc of the Dead is for horror fans, made by horror fans. More specifically, it's for zombie fans. I would, however, argue that any horror fan would do. In Doc of the Dead we're taken through the history and evolution of zombies in films, as well as in mainstream culture. We begin with their beginning, followed by their evolution and rise to fame, particularly through George A. Romero, and then finally to the modern day zombies, with films such as Shaun of the Dead and the TV show The Walking Dead being its greatest examples. While it could have been a whole lot better than the final product is, Doc of the Dead is a welcoming addition to the horror documentary family.
As a horror fan, I was enthralled by this movie. I love horror, duh, and I love zombies, double duh, so I was naturally looking forward to seeing this documentary. A few of the sections drag, which I'll get to soon, but for the most part this film works. With a lineup of celebrities such as Bruce Campbell, who hilariously explains how he'd ditch his family if a zombie apocalypse were to take place, Simon Pegg, George A. Romero and many others, Doc of the Dead rarely fails to entertain. The interviews, cutting incredibly well between that and actual movie footage or relevant events such as the zombie parade, are intriguing, informative and sometimes hilarious to watch. A few of the celebrities can drift off every now and again, but when they're on topic they struggle to fail. They're happy to be there and I'm happy to watch.
The runtime is a mere 81 minutes, but they really have to stretch to fill it up. It's very clear that they had a plan and that they were trying to stick to their plan, but they clearly didn't have a big enough plan. The film, which is short, sharp and mostly to the point, flies by. While this technically counts as staying in the topic of zombies, discussing how The Walking Dead porn parody breaks every rule already set up by the porn industry wasn't necessary. It was tedious, awkward and mostly irrelevant. What's even worse about it is that it takes up a good five to six minutes of the film's length too, easily the worst five to six minutes in the whole film.
There's so much more that this film could have spent its time discussing, but didn't. It wastes a bit of time on zombies in modern culture, which was a decent segment, but has way too much time spent on it, and, of course, the porn parody section was just ridiculously bad. I enjoyed this film, despite my ramblings, but it could have been a whole lot better than it was. It could easily have explored the joys of zombies, or more so why we enjoy watching rotting bodies eat other, inanimate rotting bodies. They could have explored what the appeal is or how it appeals differently to different people. The film, by all means, isn't bad, but it had so much more to explore that it failed to do so.
To sum up, Doc of the Dead is an occasionally hilarious and always enjoyable documentary with a great line-up of celebrities, but it really could have spent more time on the appeal of zombies and less on their appearances in porn.
3 1/2 Stars