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Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead (2015) - Blu-ray Review

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Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead - Blu-ray Review

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4 stars

I think it might just be time to pass Ash’s 12 gauge, double barrel Remington shotgun along to the next auteurs of horror. Yes, Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead is that impressive of a debut from an entirely new crew of makeup effects and wicked stunts. Hand over the Boomstick, Raimi. The time has come.

Blasting across the screen with an attitude and swagger not seen since the debut of Peter Jackson and Sam Raimi, Kiah Roache-Turner’s Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead is a gonzo-inspired festival of gore that does not disappoint. Even the hardest of sickos to please will surely be entertained by the face melting antics of a world gone to hell and an ending that flips assumption on its ass and begs for more adventures through Bulla Bulla and the surrounding Australian landscape.

Wearing its influences on its blood-soaked armor, Wyrmwood is a one hell of a wild ride. It is Mad Max meets Night of the Living Dead as one mechanic suits up in household items and takes on a zombie uprising and Roache-Turner, along with his brother Tristan, definitely know what they are doing among the living dead. They’ve been long at it, too. Starting with mini-movies and graduating along the way, their aim to horrify and entertain is damn impressive.

The brotherly director/producer duo is also responsible for the film’s crackling script. In their original story, Jay Gallagher plays Barry, a mechanic with a wife and child at odds with the Australian outback when a meteor shower unexpectedly brings about the zombie apocalypse. His sister, Bianca Bradey as Brooke, has her own run-in with the dead when – during a photo shoot – her two friends turn against her. Both of their journeys will be full of gore and the gnashing of teeth as they forge a path of survival through twisted military experiments with the undead and an uprising of their own alongside Leon Burchill as Benny.

Remember the first high after seeing Dead Alive? Watching Wyrmwood is a lot like that. It’s inspired, completely crackers, and a whole lot of gruesome. Some of the kill shots are so technically kinetic (and cool) that I’m still unsure of how they were pulled off and then there’s the talent of special effects makeup artist Lisa Cotterill whose living dead art helps separate this release from all the other zombie dreck out there.

The fact that much of the film was financed through Crowdfunding platforms and doesn’t suck is also praiseworthy; this is, in fact, a film that is hard to fault. You just have to be prepared for its quick pace and unruly attitude as common people become heroes and science experiments in light of a sudden apocalypse that is capable of destroying governments.

Wyrmwood is an Australian zombie thriller as funny as it is bloody. The laughs flow out of open wounds with the same ferocity as fresh wounds as the Roache-Turner brothers create a uniquely spirited film that envisions the zombie uprising as something a bit more interesting than we’ve previously seen.

Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead is a solid entry in what I hope is a continuing franchise because, yes, I’d love to see more from these two.

Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead - Blu-ray Review

MPAA Rating: Not rated
Runtime:
98 mins
Director
: Kiah Roache-Turner
Writer:
Kiah Roache-Turner
Cast:
Jay Gallagher, Bianca Bradey, Leon Burchill
Genre
: Horror
Tagline:
Wyrmwood
Memorable Movie Quote: "Never, never EVER, grab another man's balls, in a fistfight. It shows low character."
Distributor:
IFC Films
Official Site: https://www.facebook.com/wyrmwoodmovie
Release Date:
February 13, 2015
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
August 4, 2015
Synopsis: Barry is a talented mechanic and family man whose life is torn apart on the eve of a zombie apocalypse. His sister, Brooke, is kidnapped by a sinister team of gas-mask wearing soldiers & experimented on by a psychotic doctor. While Brooke plans her escape Barry goes out on the road to find her & teams up with Benny, a fellow survivor - together they must arm themselves and prepare to battle their way through hordes of flesh-eating monsters in a harsh Australian bushland.

Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead - Blu-ray Review

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Available on Blu-ray - August 4, 2014
Screen Formats: 1.85:1
Subtitles
: English SDH, Spanish
Audio:
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1; English: DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0
Discs: 50GB Blu-ray Disc; Single disc (1 BD)
Region Encoding: A

Presented on Blu-ray courtesy of a partnership between Scream Factory and IFC Midnight with an AVC encoded 1080p transfer in 1.78:1, the digitally shot film definitely does not disappoint. With deep shadows and strong blacks, the color on this puppy from Down Under is ripe and ready to be picked from the vine. The blood is deep red and the greens are solid. Flesh tones are natural and layered with nice detail. There’s not a bad frame in this picture. The sound – presented in a lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 track goes a long way in adding to the oomph of the picture. Grab this one!!!

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • The commentary provided by the Roache-Turner Brothers is an interesting one as they talk (quite a bit) about their choices during the filming of the movie.

Special Features:

Starting with a strong behind the scenes feature, there is a good assortment of flavors here, folks. Scream Factory doesn’t disappoint and supplies fans of the movie with the original Crowdfunding advertisements for the picture, as well as the short they shot to support the funding movement. There are also some good deleted scenes included and storyboards.

  • The Wyrmdiaries: Behind the Scenes of Wyrmwood (50 min)
  • The 7 Minute Teaser Scene (8 min)
  • Crowdfunding Video 1 (6 min)
  • Crowdfunding Video 2 (4 min)
  • Storyboards by the Director (2 min)
  • Trailers (4 min)
  • Deleted Scenes (19 min)

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