Greetings, and welcome back to Horror Business. We have one awesome episode in store for you guys, and we’re talking about 2003’s Shaun Of The Dead and 2010’s Juan Of The Dead.
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We start by talking about what we’ve done involving horror recently. Liam talks the films The Evil, Jumbo, and the miniseries Salem’s Lot. Justin talks about the series Supernatural wrapping up and how that has impacted him. We briefly talk about the films The Wolf Of Snow Hollow and His House.
Up first is Shaun Of The Dead. Justin opens up the conversation by claiming that this film is one of two “horror comedies” that is a perfect balance of horror, comedy, and “heart”, and that the film stands on its own not just as a parody of Romero films, but as an actual entry into the wider field of the subgenre of zombie films in horror. We briefly go off on a tangent about the work of Edgar Wright and how the Cornetto Trilogy is his crowning achievement.
We discuss how the film understands that more than likely in the event of a real zombie apocalypse it wouldn’t be random humans you’d be facing as zombies, it would very likely be your friends and neighbors. The film’s quick establishment of the Romero-esque social commentary is touched upon, and how the film is so much more than jokes and gore but rather like its namesake it’s actually saying something. Some of the film’s themes of rejecting adulthood, abrasive masculinity, and immaturity are touched upon.
We talk about how Pete, the quasi-villain of the first act isn’t really a bad guy at all unless viewed through the lens of someone like Shaun who doesn’t have their act together. The melancholy theme of outgrowing your friends is touched upon. The loveable character of Ed actually being one of the worst characters is touched upon. Justin talks about how some of the emotionally heavy scenes in the movie affected him, and how some of them are smartly used to humorously break down some classic zombie film tropes. We conclude by talking about how this film was ahead of the curve when it came to the zombie culture boom of the ‘10s.
Up next is Juan Of The Dead. We begin by talking about how the film feels like a ninety-minute set up to justify a pun in the title. Liam points out that while it’s not the worst zombie movie he’s seen, it definitely doesn’t live up to its namesake.
Liam talks about how he finds the film rather funny in how it relates to the culture of Cuba and how it smartly zings Spanish and American imperialism.
We talk about how Cuba is largely removed from zombie culture; in that it’s distanced from the very idea of a zombie. Justin talks about how the films initial reaction to zombies is heavily influenced by the films deeply entrenched Catholic culture by jumping to people who are possessed or vampires, and then how the government is blaming capitalist dissidents.
Cuban film culture is briefly touched upon, in that it’s almost non-existent. Finally, we dig deep into the problematic “gay panic” attitude of the film, and how even though it’s reflective of an aspect of Latinx culture it’s still very off-putting.
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