There is a missed opportunity here by not having Damien be a zombie. Instead of brains and flesh, he wants the student loans paid off. Parallels between the literal shambling undead life takers and those that suck the life out of folks who only wish to better themselves would give the movie a little more staying power. But, changing that would rob the film of its greatest strength.
Stroud is simply fantastic in the movie. He’s handsome, charming, and has a slick way of talking. He embodies the perfect version of this kind of person and is having a blast in the role. Brittany Joyner is also quite good as Stacey, who wants to survive. Her straight character plays off the ridiculous nature of Stroud’s nicely, and the two share good chemistry.
“…biggest laugh comes just before the end credits…”
Story issues aside, the dialogue in Rose Meza’s screenplay is crackling. Zombie Debt is by and large, very funny. The quick way Damien talks and the reactions of Stacey will keep the audience laughing. The biggest laugh comes just before the end credits; no spoilers, but it is hilarious.
Director Ash Blodgett keeps things lively with some clever sight gags and fantastic use of minuscule resources. The zombie make-up is pretty good, and the sets all work well enough. Plus, the editing is lively and adds a sense of urgency and energy to the proceedings.
Zombie Debt has a plothole that is hard to ignore, given that it is about zombies. Plus, the plot does not quite go all the way in its conceit. But its wonderfully acted, impressively shot and edited- even more so when the budget is taken into consideration- and is super funny.
Zombie Debt screened at the Dragon Con Independent Short Film Festival.
"…finds a new way to play out the occasionally stale zombie apocalypse genre."