The Other Side
I watched The Other Side back in the day when I was starting to audition for film work in Atlanta (it’s another Gregg Bishop flick [he did Dance of the Dead] and was made there) and I was very happy I decided to watch!
The Other Side tells the story of Sam North who one night, while waiting for his fiancee, is murdered. He ends up in Hell but is then broken out of Hell by other lost souls who’ve discovered an exit. Back in the living world, he awakes in the hospital to discover that his fiancee’s gone missing and now there are Reapers (bounty hunters from hell) after him. Yikes! What follows is an exciting journey to find out what happened to his fiancee and learn the reasons that he ended up in hell in the first place, all with the help of the two other escaped souls – one who wants to sleep with every woman he sees and the other a bad ass who isn’t entirely what he seems.
I found the story fun and fairly original although it does fall apart near the end and completely stops making any kind of sense but the final ending isn’t half bad. I loved the direction and aesthetics – lots of dark, muted colors and the director’s vision of Hell is completely creepy. Nathan Mobley as “Sam” does a fantabulous job and pretty much carries the entire film.
Definitely much more a thriller/action flick than horror, The Other Side is a nice slice of indie film gone right. If you’ve been jonesing for something off the beaten path definitely give this one a try.
*On a different but somewhat related note, there’s a book series I read that has a somewhat similar (very loosely similar) premise. Sandman Slim: A Novel breaks out of hell after being sent there as a living, breathing mortal. Once he gets back to earth, he’s on the hunt for the people who sent him there all with the help of a severed, talking, beer swilling head. I really cannot say enough good things about this series – gypsy prostitute vampire hunters, fights with Satan and total bad assery. If you’re into the reading thing, I highly recommend you check it out!
Dance of the Dead
Okay, I have to admit some bias with this review. Dance of the Dead (Ghost House Underground)was filmed in Atlanta when I lived there and I worked with a couple of people that are in it (back in my long ago acting days). Regardless, it is hands down one of my favorite zombiedies of all time.
The plot is simple. A high school prom goes horribly wrong when the dead start rising due to toxic waste from the nearby nuclear power plant. The end result is funny and gory, one of my favorite combinations. The central cast of characters is a group of teens who for various reason are either not going to prom or just haven’t arrived yet. They band together when the zombies start attacking and are pretty much the breakfast club of zombie fighters.
You’ve got the cheerleader, the sci-fi group, the wild redneck rebel, the vice-president of the class, a group of rockers and the pizza delivery guy. Add in a half-crazed coach who’s ex-military and you’ve got a recipe for laughter. Together they manage to make their way to the school in hopes of saving their classmates – but do they make it in time????
Hilarious highlights include:
Said half-crazed ex-military coach gets explosives off of Craigslist just in case of emergencies.
Said rockers aren’t even aware of the zombie attacks for the first quarter of the film or more because they’re so stoned.
These zombies LOVE music. It’s the only thing that stops them dead in their tracks.
Now do yourself a favor and go watch “Dance of the Dead”!