Told from the perspective of a zombie, first-time director Marc Price’s homemade horror stars newcomer Alastair Kirton as the eponymous Colin, who literally falls out of his house one day in pursuit of human flesh.
But Kirton’s undead Londoner isn’t the kind to gore, eat and run. The young actor – who reminds me of actor John Amplas, the young bloodsucker in George A Romero’s cult classic, Martin – oozes pathos and sensitivity, much like the zombie Bub in Romero’s Day of the Dead, as his Colin shuffles through London’s zombie-filled streets.
Daisy Aitkens plays the heartbroken sister, Linda, who tries to help Colin when a gang of muggers attacks him. But when she is bitten, she’s forced to leave Colin to his fate.
The film moves from being the Dawn of the Dead (Colin’s re-animation) to the Night of the Living Dead, by way of Last Man on Earth (as he shuffles past council blocks and desolate streetscapes) and [Rec] (a group of documentary film-makers get devoured in a flesh-eating orgy).
After a genuinely creepy scene in which a lone survivor of the zombie house massacre meets a grisly end at the hands of two eyeless zombies, Colin is rescued by his sister and taken to their mother’s – in the hope that, by returning home, he might remember his human past.
But with no cure on the horizon, and Linda becoming one of the undead herself, Colin soon finds himself back on the streets where vigilantes are rounding up and killing zombies.
After succumbing to a homemade bomb blast and a hammer attack, poor Colin then rises again and, instinctively, returns to his own home. In flashback, we learn that he killed his girlfriend Laura after she ‘turned’ and infected him. The film ends with a rotting Colin holding a vigil beside Laura’s corpse.
Having produced, directed and edited short films of the same quality as Colin, I understand the blood, sweat and tears of trying to create your own cinematic vision using a non-existent budget, limited tools, and a bunch of friends play-acting.
I must admit I was expecting the worst, or at least, an amateurish attempt, when the opening credits rolled at the recent press screening. But having sat through all 97 minutes of this homemade zombie flick, I was genuinely surprised by the end results.
Bedroom filmmaker Marc Price has proven that, despite limited resources, young filmmakers can make movies that can be inventive and engaging – so long as you have a vision. And Price does. The way he shoots each scene with his dated camcorder, lighting and sound equipment is done with skill and dedication; and the editing and post-music score is handled with equal care.
Especially effective are the sound effects (the sound of bones crunching are quite chilling), the make-up (gory rather than garish), and the inventive camerawork (the streetscapes are more convincing than those in the terrible I Am Legend).
Way better than any of the cheap US imports you might currently see on Zone Horror (which I love, nevertheless), Colin is certainly an inventive addition to the zombie genre – and one, I suspect, even George Romero himself might give the thumps up to.
But with regards to it being made for only £45, well…
Catch Colin at Film4 FrightFest on Friday 28 August