Zombie movies are a dime a dozen. Zombie’s seem to be the one sub-genre that no matter how over-saturated the market is, they continue to be made at a break-neck speed. While there are always classics that break the mold, for every great idea you have three that do nothing more than rehash old ideas. Which brings me to today’s movie, SICK, from Canadian director Ryan M. Andrews. Will it fall into the old trap of nothing new, or will SICK have some meat on it’s bones?
The movie takes place two years into the zombie apocalypse. We meet Dr. Leigh Rozetta, a young doctor who has been assigned by the government to try and find a cure. She is currently living in a makeshift bunker with a number of soldiers who catch infected for her so that she can do her job. Being that they are two years in, peoples moods are bleak as a cure appears to be no closer than it was when they began. Soldiers tell Leigh that the area outside the bunker is beginning to clear out of infected, so she decides it’s finally time to venture out on her own to try and find her parents. While outside, she stumbles upon a handful of survivors who are doing whatever they can to find medicine for their camp. After surviving a zombie onslaught, Leigh and two of the survivors Seph and McKay decide to board themselves up inside Leigh’s parents home for the night. However, trust issues cause the inside of the house to be just as deadly as the outside. Can our group of survivors survive the night?
SICK is a well played character piece. While it is definitely a zombie movie at it’s core, the ghouls take a back seat to the survivors which gives it a breath of fresh air. It reminds me of Romero’s Dawn of the Dead where a small group of people are at the center of the problem, making the movie much more intimate. Most zombie movies choose to go larger cast so that they can have more gory zombie kills (which I no doubt enjoy as well). This dynamic makes SICK stand out from a standard independent zombie movie. Toss in the phenomenal twist about an hour into the movie when things really begin to pick up, and SICK is a fun little flick. As an added bonus, scream queen Debbie Rochon makes a guest appearance as another doctor working on a cure. Who doesn’t love a little Debbie Rochon in their horror movies?
On the flip side, like I mentioned above, I love my gory zombie kills. This is one of the few areas where SICK does disappoint a little, but since that was never the primary goal of the movie it is easy to give it a pass. I am in no way saying there are no zombie kills, just not the onslaught that some movies bank their entire movie around. Also, the movie does have the technical limits that come from the smaller budget limits of the genre so keep that in mind. If you want a polished turd, I’m sure there’s one playing at a multiplex somewhere (if not just wait for World War Z). This movie shows it’s heart on it’s sleeve.
SICK is a breath of fresh air in a genre that has been done to death. Focusing more on the survivors rather than the zombie kills is a risk that may turn away some gore hounds, but the plot twist that takes the movie into a completely new direction is well worth your time. To keep up on all SICK news, check out the official website, the official Facebook page, as well as right here on the Bloodsprayer.