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Poster for Zombies: The Beginning
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Zombies: The Beginning

Director: Bruno Mattei Run Time: 95 min. Format: DCP Rating: NR Release Year: 2007

Starring: Yvette Yzon, Alvin Anson, Paul Holmes, James Gregory Paolleli, BB Johnson

An evil corporation sends a team of marines led by the sole survivor of a previous attack on a rescue mission to a remote Pacific Island following a zombie outbreak stemming from nefarious scientific experiments. It all goes bad really fast.

Plot sound familiar? It should, as this is the final film from legendary Italian horror director Bruno Mattei (Hell of the Living Dead, Zombie 3, Rats: Night of Terror) who made a career of high energy knock offs of Hollywood hits featuring his unique splatter signature.

In the final years of his career, Mattei made several shot-on-video movies for the international market, and this was one of the best of them – featuring the plot lifted from James Cameron’s Aliens, mixed with elements of his own 1980 knock off of Romero’s Dawn of the Dead. What follows is a third world acid trip from hell, with Grand Guignol gore, high-caliber weapons, mutated rugrats and goopy tentacles all colliding in a Calabrian casserole of spaghetti sauce-slathered greatness.