The last in our Halloween month for another year and I’m feeling blue about that. But there’s not a lot of time for crying when there’s a film review to be done and this week’s pick looks set to be fun if nothing else.
Night of the Living Deb (2015)
After a girls’ night out, endearingly awkward Deb wakes up in the apartment of the most attractive guy in Portland, Maine. She’s thrilled, but she can’t remember much of what got her there….
Deb (Maria Thayer) is an awkward redhead and therefore hugely relateable (though it turns out she’s an idiot savant, so not so average after all). While out sinking jars at the bar with her best friend Ruby, she’s cajoled into talking to a hot guy, despite her self-doubt. Although said hottie is in a relationship, the two hit it off enough to spend the night together.
In the morning, Ryan (Michael Cassidy) is eager to get Deb out of his apartment, claiming no memory of their one night stand. Despite Debs’ best efforts, she is forced to concede defeat when Ryan fails to fall for her charms again. She takes his hints finally but there’s a snag in the pair’s goodbye: zombie apocalypse.
While they’re been doing their thing it seems that most of the town has been overrun by bloody lusty zombies. Ryan might be something of a dickhead but he does allow Deb back up to his to think about their next move. That she has a car makes her suddenly more appealing to Ryan and together they hatch a plan to drive to his father’s estate, where an escape route has already been mapped out.
The new unlikely companions share a little family history on their way to Frank Waverly’s (Ray Wise) and Ryan is patronisingly surprised to learn that Deb has basic local knowledge of who Frank is because of her job as a news network camera person. He also reveals that his father runs the most ethically unsound business ever (water treatment of some sort) and therefore goes against everything he personally stands for. (Ooooh, foreshadowing!).
Frank is reluctant to welcome a stranger into the fold, given that their escape helicopter (rich people, amiright?) is only prepared for four. But Ryan insists that Deb stay. This is pretty awkward given that his girlfriend Stacy (Syd Wilder) is also at the house – and she’s not the fluffiest of souls. Brother Chaz is a douche bag too, secretly in love with his brother’s girl who he’s also been sleeping with.
Anyway, there’s some misunderstanding and Deb decides to leave the Waverlys to it. Along the way she uncovers the cause of the zombie breakout (remember the foreshadowing) and this leads to a dangerous altercation with the military. Frank Waverly turns out to be willing to lay his life on the line for his son and that kind of makes him okay in my book.
There’s loads of zombie shenanigans and our plucky pair begin to bond (who knew?). Deb opens up about her dream of becoming a news anchor and Ryan is actually so bland, I can’t even remember what he talks about.
Then Deb has a brainwave and our new heroes peg it to the news station to make a satellite broadcast to the rest of the world about what it going on in their town (and has been covered up by the government).
Will they survive this end of days? Will they get it together despite their massive differences as human beings?
Will you care?
Meh. Horror comedy is pretty difficult to smash out of the ball park and this definitely doesn’t do that. It isn’t terrible, it’s just instantly forgettable and kind of boring. Which is a shame as I wanted to like Deb.
Why did she have to be so boy-obsessed though and then secretly smart and cool? It’s kind of patronising. I get that it’s a comment on one night stands and never really knowing them until you take the time to but still.
It seems a bit dated for a 2015 movie, I guess is what I’m getting at. I get that we women have needs and are allowed to like men but the ditzy boy-crazy heroine seems a little 80’s and not in a John Hughes charming way.
Also, genuinely, justice for poor Ruby!
2.5/5. Missed the mark for me.