Exploitation Retrospect | The Journal of Junk Culture and Fringe Media
Zombie 4: After Death (1988)
Media Blasters | Review by Dan Taylor

What's the biggest mistake you can make when watching something called ZOMBIE 4: AFTER DEATH that stars gay porn heartthrob Jeff Stryker in a lead role? That's right, forget to turn off your brain.

Honestly, it wasn't my fault. I just wasn't expecting Z4 to start off in such slam bang fashion as some researchers armed with guns confront a voodoo priest and his DEMONS-esque zombie in the flick's paint-the-screen-red opening ten minutes filled with eye gouges, flesh peeling AND the fiery pits of Hell for God's sake!!

By that time it was too late and my brain was already way ahead of the screenplay by Rosella Drudi and Claudio Fragasso's direction. In fact, it was nearly another hour before they threw us any character motivation and that was only after we argued about who the hell these people were supposed to be.

Oh sure, there's The Stupid Guy Who Reads Aloud from The Book of the Dead, The Gung-Ho Army Guy, and The Black Guy Who Says Motherfucker, but we all know that they're just getting in line to be Zombie Food. In fact, Z4 is almost so devoid of plot and characterization that when one of the characters reveals a MAJOR plot point, nobody reacts to it!

As for Stryker, you would've thought that a career in gay porn would make you a better actor. Which is where you'd be wrong. His best performance on the DVD comes in the "bonus" interview which is conducted standing next to his car.

Want to know the worst part about ZOMBIE 4? If I walked into a video store and saw something called ZOMBIE 5 on the shelf I wouldn't be able to rent it fast enough!


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