Shooting their heads is the key to everything.House of the Dead
is a film adaptation of a popular light-gun game of the same name
directed by the infamous Uwe Boll in 2003. It flung his name into video game movie infamy
movie to the video games, the movie follows a group of people going to a daylight rave held in ominiously named
Isla Del Muerte (Spanish
for "Island of the Dead", no relation to that one
, or that other one
), who are then attacked by hordes of zombies. Gun smugglers, cops, and a hundreds-of-years-old
undead Mad Scientist
ex-priest are also involved.
A "captain Kirk" joke early on and an explicit reference to George Romero indicate that the film may actually be a subtle and deliberate Self-Parody
. Later a "Funny Version" of the film was released, which is a Recut
consisting of goofy outtakes
and sarcastic pop-up commentary.A sequel
was released in 2005.
This film contains the examples of:
- Actor Allusion: Given when the protagonists meet Kirk:
- An Arm and a Leg: Casper gets her legs chopped off before dying.
- An Axe to Grind: Rudy's melee weapon of choice. Some zombies also carry axes.
- Attack Of The Rave Held On A Seemingly Deserted Island
- Bald of Evil: Castillo.
- Bare Your Midriff: Alicia.
- Big Damn Heroes: Casper appears to blow away zombified Cynthia when she is attacking our protagonists.
- Black Best Friend: Karma.
- Bling-Bling-BANG!: Karma arms herself with a gold plated pistol from Kirk's stash.
- Blood from the Mouth
- Blown Across the Room: Happens to one zombie during the graveyard fight.
- Bottomless Magazines: Runs rampant during the graveyard fight until our protagonists reach the house, and then they run out of bullets.
- The Cameo: Then Sega of America president Peter Moore and series creator Rikiya Nagakawa appear as zombies.
- Captain Obvious: When the main cast realizes that they missed the boat to the rave, the narrator notes immediatly that they, in fact, missed the boat.
- Chekhov's Skill: Alicia's fencing studies.
- Closed Circle: The island.
- Continuity Nod: Rudy's last name? Curien, after Big Bad Roy Curien from the first game. What does this mean? Who the hell knows?
- Deliberately Monochrome: The flashback scenes around Castillo.
- Department of Redundancy Department: This gem of an exchange...
Rudy: "You created it all so you could become immortal. Why?"
Castillo: "To live forever!"
- Developing Doomed Characters
- Double Tap: Casper is savvy enough to do it.
- Drop the Hammer: One of the zombies carry a mallet.
- Dumb Blonde: Cynthia.
- Exploding Barrels: Gunpowder barrels in mint condition from the XIV century.
- Fanservice: Some nudity is shown, as usual with these kind of movies. But notably from Erica Durance, who'd later play Lois Lane in Smallville.
- Foreshadowing: "They missed the boat to the rave. If they only decided to stay back at Seattle, they'd all be alive today." Subtle.
- Gainaxing: Alicia does it while she's running away from the exploding house. In slow motion.
- Genre Savvy: When Kirk encounter zombies, he simply starts shooting them without further questions. He doesn't look even mildly surprised.
- Girlish Pigtails: Liberty.
- A God Am I: Said by Castillo in a flashback.
There is no God. Only me.
- Grievous Bottley Harm: When our cast accidentally revives the dead in the lab, Rudy starts throwing bottles and containers at them.
- Guns Akimbo: Kirk with two Desert Eagles during the The War Sequence.
- Hazardous Water: These zombies can swim.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Kirk and later Simon make one.
- How We Got Here: The film starts with Rudy sitting on the island graveyard and recounting the events that lead him there.
- Idiosyncratic Wipes: Footage from the actual game is used for transfers. It's as awkward as it sounds like.
- Idiot Ball: When the cast reaches the rave area, only Alicia is bothered by the fact it's deserted and has bloody rags throughout it. But even she is later convinced that there is just an elaborate stunt going on.
- Immortality: Castillo has found it. Now he is searching for fresh body parts to keep himself that way.
- Impaled Palm: When our protagonists are attacked on a walkway over a swamp, Rudy manages to impale his hand on the sole huge nail on it.
- Improbable Aiming Skills: Despite most of the characters not having any experience with the guns before, they manage to score plenty of headshots.
- Informed Ability: According to the opening narration, Karma thinks she's Foxy Brown, Simon is Brainless Beauty, and there's a Love Triangle between Karma, Simon, and Alicia. Evidence on any of these descriptions isn't really shown.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Kirk.
- Jump Scare: The thing in the blood tank.
- Latex Perfection: Castillo wearing Greg's face.
- Lock and Load Montage: Before the The War Sequence.
- Losing Your Head: After Rudy cuts off Castillo's head, he still has life in it to operate his body in an attempt to kill Rudy.
- Love Makes You Evil: According to the ending, Rudy will cause a zombie outbreak because he tried to bring back Alicia.
- Lowered Monster Difficulty: The zombies suddenly become very easy to kill when the remaining protagonists are nearing Castillo's secret lair.
- Machete Mayhem: Kirk's melee weapon.
- Mad Scientist: Castillo.
- The Man They Couldn't Hang: One of the flashbacks shows Castillo surviving a hanging.
- Mix-and-Match Man: Castillo.
- The Narrator: Rudy.
- Neck Snap: Zombified Cynthia kills Hugh by snapping his neck.
- Never Heard That One Before: "I don't like no Captain Kirk jokes."
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: When infected Kirk blows himself up, the following explosion lets the zombies inside refuge that our main characters fought for in the big zombie battle.
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: While travelling underground, the protagonists encounter zombie conquistadors.
- Not Using the Z Word: When the cast wonder about the things that are attacking them, Alicia points out that they are zombies and they better accept it.
- Now or Never Kiss: Alicia gives one to Rudy.
- Off-the-Shelf FX: Transitions and some action scenes use footage from the original game, that is to say the one released in 1996.
- Opening Monologue: Narration is used early on to tell us that things has went to hell and to introduce Alicia and her friends.
- Orbital Shot: Used when a character dies with a fade-to-red effect and during the big zombie battle.
- Our Zombies Are Different: These zombies are a combination of types C and F.
- Outrun the Fireball: Rudy and Alicia do it when they blow up Castillo's lair.
- The Power of Blood: Corpses are revived instantly on contact with chemically altered blood.
- Protective Charm: Salish gives Cynthia a crucifix necklace for protection. She never wears it.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Zombies are shown to have red eyes early in the film when they kill Matt and Johanna.
- The Reveal: In the ending, dialogue reveals Rudy's last name as Curien, the same as the villain of the first and the third game.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: How Greg manages to pay off Kirk.
- See You in Hell: Said by Kirk when blows himself up.
- Sinister Minister: Castillo was one when he was alive.
- Swamps Are Evil: There's a foggy swamp in the middle of the island and it has zombies hiding in it.
- Sword Fight: A climactic one between Castillo and Alicia. Rudy attempts join in too with his axe, but mostly only gets in the way.
- Team Dad: Kirk.
- Title of the Dead
- Too Dumb to Live: Applies to everyone who consciously decided to go to a rave in a secluded swampy island with no power that happens to be named "Island of the Dead".
- Use Your Head: Liberty headbutts a zombie that is attacking her in the water.
- Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Greg throwing up on Cynthia on the boat.
- The War Sequence: There's a 10 minute sequence where our protagonists try to reach the title house and have to fight hordes of zombies to get there. It's filled with egregious usage of Bullet Time and loose grasp of continuity.
- Wearing a Flag on Your Head: Liberty wears stars and stripes themed outfit.
- What the Hell, Hero?: When Liberty is caught by zombies, Rudy and everyone else just stare at them from a short distance and don't move a muscle to help her.
- Somewhat justifiable, as by that time, even more zombies were storming the area and they had just run out of ammunition.
- Your Cheating Heart: Before they get killed, Johanna attempts to cheat on her boyfriend with Matt.
- Zombie Gait: Both running and walking zombies are present. And many stand around simply waiting to be shot.
The Funny Version provides the examples of: