ZOMBEAVERS….ZOMBEAVERS…ZOMBEAVERS, the word rolls off the tongue with little effort, it’s a word that belongs in our lexicon. It’s fun to say and it makes me laugh, much like the film that gave birth to the clever play on words. The film from veteran comedy writer Jordan Rubin hits all the right beats and will undoubtedly become a cult classic and deserves to sit among the best in the genre. This may be his first film as a director but the script (which he co-wrote with Al and Jon Kaplan) is lean, witty, and never forgets to keep it’s tongue planted firmly in cheek next to them big ass beaver teeth.
Mary (Rachel Melvin) has arranged a weekend away from the boys with her two best friends Zoe (Cortney Palm) and Jenn (Lexi Atkins). They’re headed to her cousin’s cabin in the woods by an old pond. Jenn recently caught her boyfriend cheating and this was their way of trying to get her mind off of things. Things don’t go quite as planned when the guys, Sam (Hutch Dano), Tommy (Jake Weary), and Buck (Peter Gilroy) all show up. The girls give in and allow them to stay but it only causes friction among the group when Jenn and Sam argue over ‘the incident’. When some sort of rabid beaver attacks them in the cabin, things take an unexpected turn. This isn’t just a rabid beaver, it’s a zombeaver and there isn’t just one. There’s a whole pack of them with a taste for blood and these young adults are going to be their main course.
ZOMBEAVERS is a perfect mixture of humor and horror by a group of filmmakers who understand and respect the genre. The characters were intelligently written and there was some truly inspired and funny dialogue. It was a smart move to keep the runtime tight (clocking in at just over 75min) in order to keep the joke from wearing itself too thin. The cast appeared comfortable with one another and it wasn’t hard to believe this group to be friends. I’m most certainly not a fan, but I did chuckle when I realized John Mayer has a cameo.
What I love most about ZOMBEAVERS was the fact they used puppets as opposed to cheap CGI. It gives the film a touch of class and feels as if it’s a throwback to films from the eighties or nineties, something like CRITTERS maybe. There’s a small amount of CGI but it was used in a near perfect manner, never over doing it, enhancing the scenes just enough. And if that isn’t enough for you, there’s a healthy dose of cheap gore to make hounds howl out loud. I tip my hat to the filmmakers behind this incredibly fun and ridiculous B-Movie, it’s bound to become a classic.