City Of Rott (2006)

DVD Cover (Unearthed Films)
Genres: Animated Comedy, Animated Feature Film, Animated Horror, Animation, Zombie Film
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Frank Sudol Frank Sudol
Frank Sudol Frank Sudol

5.5 / 10 - Overall Rating

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Review by Chad
Added: September 03, 2006
Anyone who knows me beyond "that guy that writes reviews" will attest to the fact that I hate anime and most all types of animation. Sure, I love South Park and The Simpsons as much as the next guy, but beyond those select few shows, it just doesn't do anything for me. Needless to say, a feature-length film that also happens to be animated isn't something that I'll pick up very often, but given the premise behind this one, I had to make an exception.

Fred is a grumpy old man who wants nothing more than to find a new pair of slippers for his aching feet. With no car and only his walker for support, he sets out through the "city of rott" in order to check the shoe-store at the town mall for a good deal on footwear. Oh... and did I mention that the town is heavily infested with zombies thanks to an outbreak of killer worms that infect human brains? Indeed it is, and with the help of his walker (the one that he talks to as though it were his best friend), Fred has become quite the zombie-killing machine. If that isn't bizarre enough for you, things get more and more twisted as the movie progresses, but there's the gist of things.

When I said that Fred is a zombie-killing machine, I wasn't joking; this crotchety old man tears through dozens and dozens of zombies for the first half of this hour-long movie, leaving nothing but blood and guts in his wake. Yes, even though this is an animated feature, there's no shortage of the red stuff. Heads are smashed in, bodies are ripped in half, guts spill out onto the road, and of course, it wouldn't be a zombie movie if we didn't get to witness a pack of those undead savages tear apart a couple of unlucky humans. Fred wields his walker as a samurai would his sword, and watching him go to work on the undead hordes is something that any gore-loving geek will instantly fall in love with.

Sure, there's not much to be found here in terms of the storyline, because as I mentioned, the first half hour is really nothing more than zombie carnage. We get to watch Fred walk down the road for a few minutes and we listen in as he chats with his walker, but these scenes are short and to the point: "I want to get some shoes and I'm hungry", zombie attack, "let's walk down this street", zombie attack, repeat over and over again. Those of you looking for a great storyline will be woefully disappointed, but if you've ever found yourself fast-forwarding through some cheap b-movie in order to get to the gore sequences, then you should definitely give this one a chance.

My only complaint is that after this first half hour (give or take, I wasn't really watching the clock), things start to fall apart as we see what else is going on in the city. We watch as a number of people go about their business in this town and most of these sequences aren't played out until the end. I kept thinking that everything would connect in the end, but instead, there was simply a message telling me to "THINK." Well, I "THINK" that Sudol should have either gave the movie another half hour to develop some of this stuff or he should have trimmed a half hour off of the running time in order to form a more coherent, enjoyable piece of work. To be fair, Fred is slightly involved with these scenes, but revealing how would sort of spoil the movie. I do get and appreciate what he was trying to say here (the elderly are outcasts even though they can contribute in their own little way), but I "THINK" that he should leave the social commentary to Romero.

Overall, it's still worth a rental at the very least for those of you who haven't given up on the zombie genre yet and want something new. The style of animation is pretty easy to get used to (think South Park, only slightly less animated and a thousand times more detailed), and there's a lot of neat scenes to be found, especially if you get a kick out of seeing zombies eviscerated and torn apart in very unique ways. Horror fans will also enjoy pointing out the nods to some of the classics (watch for "Tex's Chainsaws" and a nice little tribute to Romero), and there are some scenes that are quite funny. I just can't help but think how much better things would have been had the presentation either been trimmed or extended; either one would have worked, but an hour was an unfortunately bad choice for the storyline. 6/10.
Tristan #1: Tristan - added 09/04/2006, 05:05 PM
This movie had a really neat animation style. I didn't enjoy it very much though.
Tristan #2: Tristan - added 09/09/2006, 03:24 AM
Yeah, I'm going back on that. I watched it all the way through again, and I enjoyed it alot more. The only beef I have, is that it lost it's way in the last 20 minutes, because the key character is dead.
Christopher #3: Christopher - added 10/18/2006, 06:34 PM
Sudol took huge advantage of the film being an animation. You'll never see an old man fight off hordes of zombies with a walker in a live action zombie film. The way the worms would crawl after its host's killer instead of just dying was a very nice touch. A lot different than most zombie films, which was nice to see. Not every bullet fired was a head shot, zombies turned on one another, quite a few others too. The cover in general being a tribute to Army Of Darkness was very classy. Definitely shows Unearthed expanding in genre's and not just sticking to underground Japanese gore films.
Griffinheart #4: Griffinheart - added 09/21/2008, 09:52 PM
The animation style and audio in that trailer seem almost painful...
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