The Horde [La Horde] (2009)

Since the undead started flooding our screens scriptwriters have been looking for new and inventive twists to the usual zombie story line. Slow zombies, fast zombies, Nazi zombies, zombies on a plane anything and everything to keep the audience entertained.
French frightener The Horde is another zombie movie striving to be different this time adding in cops and gangsters, guns and martial arts in an action packed zombie-fest which sadly fails to inspire or really stand out from the legion of bland, faceless, limbless flesh eaters already out there.

When one of their number is murdered by gangsters a crew of cops decide to take violent revenge. However their tower block assault fails and they are captured by the gang. Seemingly doomed they are saved when outside all hell breaks lose as a zombie apocalypse descends on the city creating chaos and bloodshed all around.

As they are attacked and slaughtered, the only chance that the remaining feuding few have to survive is to join together to take on the undead human-hungry monsters. Then escape their concrete prison.

The debut feature from writing-directing team Yannick Dahan and Benjamin Rocher it is easy to see that the duo are just starting out from the uninspired direction and simplistic script. Over stuffed with testosterone the plot is barely existent and the script is full of action movie clichés, falling around the level found in any Steven Segal straight to DVD sequel.

The only character with any ‘character’ is the axe-wielding, mad, old war vet René (Yves Pignot), but even his dialogue seems to descend into overt racism and sexism after a while. Besides Pignot, Eriq Ebouaney from Thirst and Transporter 3 gives Nigerian gang leader Markudi a certain gravitas between the gunshots and gurning but the rest of the cast although passable are unimpressive.

Where The Horde does work is in the action, violence and gore which are all done well and with aplomb. Flesh rips, blood spurts and bullets blaze as the motley crew work their way through the various floors of the derelict block of flats. Tooled up with a arsenal of weapons they dispatch the berserker zombies who stand in their way.

Adding Assault on Precinct 13 to 28 Days Later times by District 13 this French zombie action flick is a movie mathematical equation that doesn’t quite add up. However if you love your zombie flicks low on intelligence and high on action this is perfect for you.

Movie Rating: ★

★ ☆ ☆ ☆ 

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Alex Humphrey

Alex studied film at the University of Kent and went on to work for Universal Pictures in their Post Room gaining an inside look at the movie industry from the very bottom. Constantly writing reviews in everything from local magazines to Hip Hop sites Alex honed his critical skills even spending a brief period as a restaurant critic. Read more

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