Like crossing garlic with blue cheese, it’s hard to see how you can go wrong with two such strong ingredients as Nazis AND zombies, all rolled into one mouth-watering package. And yet, more often than not, you end up feeling unfulfilled with stink in your mouth. So far, the 21st Century has given us three films featuring Nazi undead. No sign yet of a Churchill/Van Helsing team-up, so we have to make due with:
The Bunker by Rob Green (UK, 2001)
Nazi Zombie Factor: Actually quite realistic for a film featuring Nazi Zombies. The plot is fairly plausible, as these things go, and there even is a moral. War is, indeed, hell.
Directed by Rob Green, currently working on a film featuring Romans and werewolves. Of course.
Not, as the name would imply, yet another take on the last days of Hitler. There were plenty of other bunkers in World War II, the suicidal Fuehrer’s not included. Some, however, did include Nazi Zombies, as this film suggests. This is one of few Nazi zombie films from the point of view of the Nazis, though, alas, not from the point of view of the Nazi Zombies. Set at the end of 1944, a group of German soldiers are surrounded by hamburger eating Americans on one side, and the no doubt flesh eating Nazi zombies on the other. They have to choose which enemy is worse. How will it end? Well, we all know who eventually took over the world. Clue: it was not the flesh eating Nazi Zombies.
Outpost by Steve Barker (UK, 2008)
Nazi Zombie Factor: Nazi Zombies as one of Hitler’s wonder weapons is not such a bad idea. It’s their inconsistency that grates. Sometimes they march in formation like good Wehrmacht soldiers, at other times they appear out of nowhere and dig themselves up from the ground, caring little for Nazi tactics. Come on, make up your mind.
The Brits really seem to have a thing for Nazi Zombies. Perhaps they are trying to remind us how things would have been if they had lost the Battle of Britain. Ray Stevenson, best known as Pullo from the Rome series, is here a mercenary somewhere in the Balkans. His group is on a mission to retrieve a MacGuffin from an old German bunker where they run into, you guessed it, Nazi Zombies. Apparently, the Germans’ mad scientists had their own version of the Philadelphia Experiment way back when, leaving some of their henchmen still alive, or rather, undead. An inferior ripoff of The Bunker.
Dead Snow by Tommy Wirkola (NOR, 2009)
Nazi Zombie Factor: Abandoning any attempt to explain their presence via deserting soldiers or wonder weapons, we instead get people using their intestines to mountain climb. This is the Nazi Zombie movie to beat.
Tommy Wirkola, best known for his Kill Bill spoof Kill Buljo, set among Sami reindeer herders in Northern Norway. Of course.
Disgustingly healthy and happy looking young Norwegians on a skiing trip get their comeuppance from the undead. With the charming tagline “Ein, zwei, die!”, Dead snow is everything you want a Nazi Zombie movie to be. Little attempt is made to explain their presence, other than an old Norwegian skier telling of a squad of particularly nasty Nazi bastards in occupied Norway during World War Two. What it lacks in subtlety, it makes up for in chainsaws, axes, Molotov cocktails, machine guns, and yes, even a hammer and sickle. Model Jenny Skavlan, best known from the irritating Grandiosa Pizza commercial, gets pulled down an outdoor latrine to be decapitated when the Nazi Zombies make their entrance. It’s all uphill from there.