Detention of the Dead (2012) [REVIEW]

detention of the dead movie poster 2012

 

I like horror movies and I like jokes, so I SHOULD love all movies that combine these two genres, right?! FUCK NO. You’d think that by doubling up on genres, you could possibly double your chances at being an entertaining movie. Some movies can find the right balance of entertaining people with humor while appealing to horror audiences, like Shaun of the Dead, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil, or The Cabin in the Woods, but a lot of times this formula doesn’t work. With something like Dance of the Dead or The Revenant, the jokes aren’t all that funny, and the fact that the horror elements seem to feel more forced, in almost a “Hey look! There’s gore in here for you guys, too!” kind of way. With Detention of the Dead being described as “Shaun of the Dead meets The Breakfast Club“, you’re off to a bad start, as both of those films are highly cherished. And even more recently, it seems one of the better meldings of horror and comedy was Detention, which also focused on a group of teenagers in detention, so Detention of the Dead was already fighting a losing battle. But maybe the fact that this movie was based on a play meant it could be better than your average horror comedy? Maybe? Please?

 

detention of the dead movie cast huddle

See it’s funny, because the jocks are mean to the nerds and no one understands the goth! So silly!

Every high school stereotype is represented in one session of detention, from the jock to the cheerleader to the nerd to the stoner, almost like it was The Breakfast Club or something. One big difference is that a zombie invasion breaks out in the school, causing major problems for these high schoolers who have been locked in the school. Oh no!  What do they do? Well, they run to the library, of course! I mean, it’s not like you’d actually find STUDENTS in the library! Hahaha, get it? Because students don’t go to the library? Classic. Anyways, all the students are holding out in the library, and there are a few scenes where they bare their soles and talk about how sad their lives are, similar to another movie about high schoolers who have detention together and bare their soles….if only I could remember what it was called. There’s some bad jokes, some people get killed, but eventually the goth and the nerd escape and are rescued by the army. I wish there was more that happened, but that’s pretty much it.

 

detention of the dead zombie student

Well that’s ONE lazy way of making someone look like a zombie.

More like, Detention of the DREAD! Ya  know, because it was bad. Goddammit, this is why I don’t like horror-comedies. This movie was neither horrific nor was it comedic. It was just…a movie. I guess I could kind of see what they were going for, as there were some scenes that seemed to attempt conveying actual emotions, but the entire tone of the rest of the film was so ridiculous that it was hard to be taken seriously. I couldn’t really tell if this was supposed to be parody or satire or homage, because it didn’t really do any of those things well. There were a couple of good songs that were on the soundtrack, so I guess it had that going for it. There were also a few good scenes involving practical special effects for zombie wounds and infections, so I guess it wasn’t absolutely dreadful? Oh yeah! We saw the cheerleader in her bra! Pretty cool, right?! Sorry guys, but this movie is exactly what you expect it to be. I suppose maybe this story worked better as a play, but I also know nothing about the play, so maybe the play bombed and people tried to turn the story into something profitable. It also kind of felt like maybe the play was made just as a gimmicky thing, and then maybe had enough success to justify this movie? I guess I could always do some research to figure out the development of this movie, but I think I’ve already spent more time thinking about it then I’d care to, so, yeah, feel free to skip this movie unless you have a terrible sense of humor and are really desperate to see one lady in a bra.

 

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