Doc of the Dead shows us the cultural obsession with zombies


Image via Tim Page

Writer Corey Casciato in red hoodie and Director Alexandre Phillipe next to him after Q&A

Timothy Page

Zombies seem to be everywhere these days; so much so, that you would think an actual zombie apocalypse is near. It’s not, and hopefully never will happen, but our culture today has a certain obsession with these shambling beasts.

Wrapped up in a 80 minute time frame, Doc of the Dead shows us where zombie culture came from, where it is, and where it might go. ACC held an event on February 1, where they screened the film. Afterward, director Alexandre Phillipe and writer Cory Casciato held a Q&A. They answered everything from their favorite zombie film, what inspired them to make this movie, and where they think the culture is headed next.

As a movie, Doc of the Dead is a tight, fast moving documentary. Including interviews with Simon Pegg (Shawn of the Dead), George A. Romero (Night of the Living Dead), Max Brooks (World War Z) and Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead). They all gave their thoughts on the recent zombie craze and why they think it’s so big. I’d highly recommend it, if you can take clips of disemboweling and some creepy imagery. It is interesting and informative, by the end I felt like I learned a little TOO much about the culture. Did you know that there is zombie porn out there? Well I didn’t, and now I do…p10534457_p_v8_aa

The Q&A held afterwards was a way for the students in attendance to pick the Director’s brains *pun intended* on the process of making the movie.
“I haven’t watched a zombie movie since,” said Phillipe. “I spent so much time on the topic I’m sick of it.” He said the same happened to him while he made his documentary on Star Wars, The People vs. George Lucas.

Other questions were asked during the Q&A, including how old their kids will be before they are allowed to watch a zombie film.

Casciato answered with a story, he recently let his three year old daughter watch Mad Max: Fury Road with him. He said she handled it well, but said she’ll be much older when she gets to experience zombie carnage.

“The first zombie film I saw was Return of the Living Dead. I was six years old and that really f—ed me up. So [my daughter] will be much older when she gets to watch a zombie film.”

The questions kept coming and they answered them with ease. Cory runs a blog entirely dedicated to zombies and Phillipe spent so long studying zombie culture he knew his stuff as well.

The Q&A was cut a bit short because ACC was closing early due to the snow, but it was a fascinating time. As I headed out into the snow and drove home, I had a strong desire to go a rewatch Zombieland and The Walking Dead. It was an afternoon that sparked a hunger to go and devour more of the zombie genre. Amidst the blood and gore there’s an interesting and rich history. Go ahead, and watch some Walking Dead reruns on Netflix, laugh along to the zaniness of Bill Murray in Zombieland, and maybe even find a copy of Doc of the Dead, because zombies are here, and they are here to stay.   

To see more about Doc of the Dead visit their website here.