The zombie film is one of the longest running cinematic genres, drawing its influences from the gothic works of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and frequently acting as an allegory in service of social commentary. Film’s such as George A. Romero’s Dawn of the Living Dead, used their zombies as a clever metaphor for mindless consumerist behaviour. I blame the uber-popular AMC series The Walking Dead for this, but I feel as if Zombies in the 21st century have lost purpose. The tropes of zombie stories are now so well known that it has a simple playground to work within, and one that will allow you show off visual talent without needing the thematic content.
Lars Damoiseaux’s Yummy does not seem to have a larger goal at play. I wonder if you can expect more from a film that centers around a zombie outbreak at a plastic surgery hospital, wherein our protagonists consist of a woman desperately searching for a breast reduction surgery (Maaike Neuville) and her somewhat neurotic boyfriend (Bart Hollanders) The film’s thematic content feels more tuned towards reference than referent.
It’s the gory European works of the 80s that are the key text needed to understand this film. In particular, Yummy is aping very violent troma films, Lamberto Bava’s, and Fulci’s The Beyond. Damoiseaux cranks the gore to eleven, but has fun doing so. We’re talking heads-exploding, fingers being sawed off, and a set-piece so shocking, you’ll immediately recognize what I’m talking about. It’s hard to suggest that this is a missed opportunity as Damoiseaux seems perfectly content to simply stay within established genre confines, but I can’t help but wish this had more to say. Violent Troma pastiche is certainly guaranteed to appeal to many, and if that’s you, you’ll know who you are.
- Rated: NR
- Genre: Action, Comedy, Horror, Thriller
- Release Date: 6/28/2020
- Directed by: Lars Damoiseaux
- Starring: Annick Christiaens, Bart Hollanders, Clara Cleymans, Maaike Neuville
- Produced by: Hendrik Verthé, Kobe Van Steenberghe
- Written by: Eveline Hagenbeek, Lars Damoiseaux
- Studio: 10.80 Films, A Team Productions, Everstory Productions