Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse (15)



Comedy (2015)
93mins US

Starring: Tye Sheridan, Logan Miller, Joey Morgan
Director: Christopher Landon
Writer(s): Carrie Lee Wilson, Emi Mochizuki, Christopher Landon, Lona Williams
Listings: London | Rest of UK and Ireland

Ben, Carter and Augie are best friends and avid boy scouts. On the eve of their last camp out, the three boys stumble into the local gentleman's club where they bear witness to the rise of zombies and are rescued from a mauling by sexy gun-toting cocktail waitress Denise. As the deadly outbreak threatens to spread beyond their little town, Ben, Carter, Augie and Denise head for the hardware store where they amass an arsenal of weapons to wage war on the hordes of flesh-hungry predators.

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LondonNet Film Review
Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse (15)

When Robert Baden-Powell founded The Boy Scouts Association in the early 20th century, it's unlikely that he imagined his plucky young recruits would, one day, be mankind's last defence against a zombie apocalypse. The sight of three teenage boys fending off the voracious undead with a garden strimmer and a homemade gun that fires high-velocity doorknobs is the first of myriad improbabilities that festoon Christopher Landon's gleefully gory comedy horror...

Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse. Copyright: Jaimie Trueblood/2015 Paramount Pictures. Caption: Logan Miller plays Carter, Tye Sheridan plays Ben and Joey Morgan plays Augie in Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse. Photo: Jaimie Trueblood. Copyright: 2015 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.The script's queasy conflation of exploding brains and gross-out humour delivers disappointingly few giggles or scares. Shaun Of The Dead traversed similar, entrails-slathered territory more than 10 years ago with far greater success. Periodically, Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse hits a comic bullseye, such as a gruesomely graphic set piece involving a trampoline and a male appendage that will put off even the most ravenous cinemagoers from tucking into their hotdog. Or when one septuagenarian zombie (Cloris Leachman) loses her false teeth in a fistfight and is reduced to hungrily sucking her prey without causing injury.

The film opens at Biotine Laboratories, where a hapless janitor (Blake Anderson) inadvertently unleashes a deadly virus. In the nearby town, boy scouts Ben (Tye Sheridan), Carter (Logan Miller) and Augie (Joey Morgan) are blissfully unaware of the outbreak. They are best friends, whose badge-festooned uniforms and woggles draw derision from classmates. Regardless, the boys pledge "to live courageously... to defend when I must..." under Scout Leader Rogers (David Koechner), and head into the woods for a camp out to celebrate Augie achieving the coveted condor badge. While their pal sleeps beneath the stars, Ben and Carter sneak out to a party but are waylaid at the Lawrence Of Alabia gentleman's club, where they experience a close encounter with a zombified pole dancer. The terrified lads are rescued by a gun-toting cocktail waitress called Denise (Sarah Dumont). She accompanies the scouts into town where they are reunited with an understandably disgruntled Augie. "How did you find us?" asks Ben. "I followed the stench of betrayal," retorts Augie icily. Putting their difference to one side, the teenagers fashion an arsenal of makeshift weapons to wage war on the flesh-hungry hordes and rescue fellow students including Carter's sister Kendall (Halston Sage).

Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse melds a generic coming-of-age comedy, replete with raging hormones and an unspoken crush, with a Walking Dead-style survival thriller. Sheridan, Miller and Morgan invest their hormone-addled stereotypes with a thin veneer of likability, wedging tongues firmly in cheek for the overblown action sequences. Female characters are poorly sketched and scantily dressed. Teenage boys might get a kick out of the gratuitous nudity and toilet humour, but for everyone else, Landon's film is almost as lifeless as the re-animated townsfolk, who shuffle aimlessly through deserted streets in search of flesh.

- Sam Cannon

Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse. Copyright: Jaimie Trueblood/2015 Paramount Pictures. Caption: Logan Miller plays Carter, Tye Sheridan plays Ben and Joey Morgan plays Augie in Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse. Photo: Jaimie Trueblood. Copyright: 2015 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.


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