A hard rock band rolls into the quaint and sleepy town of Grand Guignol, but their “devil worshipin’” kind is not wanted around here. At least they are not wanted for their musical talents, but for their blood. A crazy family lures the quartet to a secluded house, allow them to perform and then attempt to electrocute them. After the sparks clear the band is murdered and mutilated by things like a weed eater and a werewolf lady in a wheelchair. A demented shutterbug documents the madness on film.
Later, through some god-awful Heavy Metal incantation the band’s corpses are reanimated. From here the boys don even more spandex, leather and spikes and lumber about the burg doing what is expected of them as the living dead. They strike all the right poses, play all the right songs, and the chicks dig ‘em. They’re the Hard Rock Zombies! At some point an incredible landslide of subplots begin to unfold. Truthfully it’s difficult to even determine exactly when and where this happens. “Hard Rock Zombies” just seems to spin around in 1000 different directions at all times.
Some of the insanity involves anything from Adolph Hitler (he’s still alive) to the mating habits of zombies. There are Rock and Roll record smashing parties, an eyepatch adorned dwarf decked-out in full Nazi regalia (this is a sight to behold) and a woman who flash-dances for what seems like days on end. More weird shit involves a nasty little creature who spends the entire film literally eating itself, and in the end succeeds at devouring the flesh from its very own face. The movie does have some unique moments.
Originally this was to be a 20 minute short that was to be playing the background of director Krishna Shah’s “American Drive In”. Someone suggested he flesh it out to a full length feature. However, it’s doubtful that anyone advised Shah on exactly how it was supposed to be done. This film really lives up to that old adage “they threw in everything but the kitchen sink”. Further it’s cinematic proof that just because you have the money to make a movie doesn’t indeed mean that you should make a movie. Shah went on to produce “Sleepaway Camps 2, 3 and 4″. “Hard Rock Zombies” was banned in Iceland.
This Vintage Movie Classics release comes as a triple feature packaged with a groovy lenticular cover and the umbrella title “The Undead Rising”. The other two films are “Revolt Of The Zombies” and the old public domain standby “Night Of The Living Dead”. The prints aren’t the best, but it’s hard to beat them for the money.