I think Spencer Susser has a bonafide cult short film on his hands here, and I’m not usually one to spout off about that so easily. “I Love Sarah Jane” is a fantastic horror film that manages to provide a wonderful tale of coming of age in the middle of a zombie apocalypse. Believe it or not, Susser’s tale of a young boy whose love for an older girl will not die even in the middle of the end of the world ends up being an excellent hybrid of genres with some great writing and excellent performances. Jimbo is a young boy who finds himself in the end of the world as flesh eating zombies have taken over cities and country sides, and he aligns himself with the local juvenile delinquent and his two obnoxious little brothers for the sake of getting close to his dream girl Sarah Jane.
Susser’s apparently low budget short pulls off the feeling of futility and grim violence well showing our main character riding his bike past dead bodies and burnt down houses to endure the idiocy of the last three boys alive in his area who are intent on antagonizing a zombie who is chained to a car. The zombie effects are phenomenal painting the creatures as putrid and stomach churning yet horrifying. The entire motivation behind “I Love Sarah Jane” is that Jimbo is in love with her for a specific reason and as we see her sit to watch the news in a house that’s barely barricaded, it all comes full circle when a gross mistake on the self-appointed leader of the foursome exemplifies why Sarah Jane survived the zombie uprising, her family’s destruction, and likely the end of the world. And we also see why Jimbo is prepared to fight for her love, and may win. “I Love Sarah Jane” is an unlikely horror and romance gem, and I couldn’t believe how well Susser creates his world in such a short time and miniscule budget. This is well deserving of a feature length horror romance format, and I’ll be first in line to watch it.