Blu-ray Review: Cockneys Vs. Zombies



There’s two English speaking groups that can barely be understood by English speakers yet people love to impersonate them. The first is the Cockneys with their slang speak that can confuse the NSA. Besides their thick accent, they interchange nouns based on a series of connections and rhymes. The Limey tried to explain how a friend is called “China.” Friend is a mate. Mate rhymes with plate. And good plates are made of China. It makes sense to them. The second group that confuses listeners with their mangling of the King’s English is zombies. They spoke clearly before they became undead. But after they die and get reanimated, the only word that can be heard clearly through their moans, mumbles and groans is “Brains.” Thus it seems only natural that these two groups would be forced to mix it up in Cockneys Vs. Zombies. No matter which side wins, you’re going to need a translator.

During a construction project in East End of London, workers expose a crypt that had been sealed up by King Charles II. What could possibly be lurking behind the doors? The place turns out to be full of zombies and they’re ready to eat after all those centuries stuck below. While this mayhem is going on, a crew of well meaning kids are going to rob a bank. Why would Michelle Ryan (revamped Bionic Woman turn to a life of crime? Because she and her mates need the money to save their grandparents’ retirement home. What they don’t know is that the zombies are a greater threat to the old folks than foreclosure. The retirees aren’t completely easy pickings. They have a chance against the undead thanks to the tough as nails Alan Ford ( Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch). He’s ready to battle the undead. He’s not the only tough geezer at the home. There’s Honor Blackman (Pussy Galore in Goldfinger) eager to tangle with the animated corpses. She’s a fierce granny. The true comic element of the attack comes from the performance of Richard Briers (Good Neighbors or The Good Life). He’s quite a bit sluggish which leads to a stunning chase sequences. Who is faster: Richard using a walker or the zombie on his tail? Adding to the excitement his friends rooting him on during this excruciatingly slow chase. Can the young kids actually save their grandparents? Or will we learn what’s Cockney for brains after the elderly massacre?

Cockneys Vs. Zombies is a lark of a zombie film. There’s a proper blend of undead and English humor to make it humorous without being laughable. The work of Ford, Blackman and Briers makes less feel less like a formulaic zombie shuffle on the screen. This was Briers’ last performance which is a shame. He still had his comic timing. The movie does deliver its promised battle between two groups that will confuse you with their grasp of the English language. Luckily the movie is subtitled in English so you can almost figure out what they’re saying.

The video is 2.35:1 anamorphic. The transfer brings out the highlights of the East End of London. The 1080p brings out the charm in the late Richard Briers. The audio is DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 Surround English. You’ll get an earful of action as the elderly are pursued by the undead. There are subtitles in case you can’t handle the accents.

Audio Commentaries
feature separate tracks for director Matthais Hoene and screenwriter James Moran.

Original Look Behind the Scenes (29:13) is an eight-part documentary that covers everything including training extras to be undead.

Deleted Scenes (6:22) have 9 moments that were snipped. Hoene and Moran talk about why the action was cut.

Trailer (2:22) reminds us that the East end of London has always been a dangerous place, but nothing compares to a zombie attack.

Cockneys Vs. Zombies is a major fight. Who knew that a bunch of retirees could fight off the undead instead of merely joining them? Richard Briers brings his career to an end with a charming role in a grotesque situation.

Scream Factory presents Cockneys Vs. Zombies. Directed by: Mattius Hoene. Screenplay by: James Moran & Lucas Roche. Starring: Michelle Ryan, Honor Blackman, Alan Ford and Richard Briers. Running Time: 98 minutes. Released: September 3, 2013.

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