Dead Shack Review: A weekend getaway takes a nasty turn in Peter Ricq’s Dead Shack.
Shy and polite teen Jason (Matthew Nelson-Mahood) is spending the weekend at a cabin in the woods getaway with his best friend Colin’s (Gabe LaBelle) family. Sadly, as per other ‘cabin in the woods’ films, the break is anything but relaxing as they find themselves stalked by the lady next door and her hoard of zombies. Dumb and Dumber star, Lauren Holly, plays that lady next door, and she’s definitely not someone that you want to mess with.
Imagine if you will that The Inbetweeners and The Lost Boys were to meet within the confines of a zombie movie and you’ll get a sense of what Dead Shack is all about. It’s a horror comedy that isn’t afraid to push the laughs, or the gore. With the exception of our lead, Jason, the characters are all equally loud and crude, with questionable morals; the ‘responsible’ adult is a drug-taking, drunk with a lust for those much younger than himself. He inevitably is useless and it’s down to the teens to save the day. Thankfully, though crude in language, Dead Shack isn’t offensive. It’s a fine line, and director Peter Ricq juggles it well.
Plot details are unfortunately a little thin on the ground, with little in the way of development, but this is an old-school zombie comedy and doesn’t need too much explaining. What story we do have, unfolds at a punchy pace, the whole thing lasting barely eighty minutes. There’s no time to get bored, which in the days of the standard two-hour-plus movie, is certainly a positive.
Dead Shack is a bonkers, blood-soaked horror comedy. It’s a hard sub-genre to get right, and though it stumbles a little bit here and there, on the whole Dead Shack is a whole lot of fun.
Dead Shack review by Kat Hughes, July 2017
Dead Shack is currently playing at the Fantasia International Film Festival.