The above short film is playing at the Sundance Film Festival this week. I've watched it a few times now and I honestly don't know what to make of it. Is this for real? More to the point, is this kid really as unbelievably braindead (GET IT? CUZ ZOMBIES!) as he appears to be, or is he just playing to the camera? I have no doubt that teenage fans of "The Walking Dead Show" who work at a hardware store would spend a majority of their work days fucking around and imaging which merchandise could be used to enact the maximum damage to the undead, but this guy has taken it to another level. He might be the worst doomsday prepper/survivalist on record.
Apparently the film won Best Documentary at last year's DragonCon Film Festival, which would imply that he's serious about this moronic plan, which sounds like a straight-to-DVD ripoff of Dawn Of The Dead. The film starts off slow, then quickly escalates into awkward extemporaneous speech and poor planning of hilarious proportions. My favorite parts include:
- "No kids, no bitches because it's all about survival." You gotta think big picture dude. If you really want to survive, you're gonna need to procreate. Also, at some point you're gonna wanna get laid.
- He refers to his open air Jeep as, "90% zombie ready." First of all, how exactly does one measure the percentage of zombie preparedness? Secondly, how is it already 90% ready? Because to me it just looks like every other Jeep on the road, which would offer zero protection from a horde of zombies considering it has no roof or windows.
- The ACE Hardware store is "the place where the zombie apocalypse is pretty much immune free." WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?
- He makes the classic perimeter/parameter mix-up, which feels so scripted it hurts my face.
- The roof of the store has a quarter mile of visibility in every direction, except for the massive cluster of trees directly behind him.
- I don't know what a hot shower facility is, but I want one.
- I love his thinly disguised contempt for old people, saying they'll be good for target practice. What did his grandparents ever do to him? There's a story there I think.
- "No shows ever teach you what happens to zombies in the rain." Holy shit, wet zombies! Now we're REALLY screwed...
- His entire concept of maintaining a food supply seems to hinge on the notion that there will still be other people delivering food to the Kroger's and making taquitos at the local gas station. I hope that store has freezers, because otherwise his survivors will "eat like kings, and nothing less" for about a week and then die of malnutrition.
- That Verizon tower is not 150,000 feet in the air. Do they have measuring tapes at ACE Hardware? Because he clearly has no sense of distance, scale or proportion.
- STRAIGHT FACED METALLICA REFERENCE!
- Alright, I actually enjoy his quick evisceration of the terrible first half of Walking Dead's second season. Kudos.
- I've never heard of a Green Egg, but apparently it's the ultimate cooking experience. Also, apparently the shit is delicious.
- This girl is easily my favorite part. "Yeah, I guess he's thought of everything. I still think he's full of shit though."
- Well now that I've seen your prowess with a forklift I'm convinced. How do I get to your secure facility?
- Finally, when he talked about dreaming of killing the zombified versions of all his stupid customers, the first thing I thought of was that bit in the BBC's Sherlock when the detective says that one day solving murders isn't going to be enough for Holmes and that one day he's going to actually kill someone. Then again, I have worked in retail, and I do know exactly what he's talking about.
If our unnamed hero (Matt Ryckman, I presume?) really is serious about his post-apocalypse game plan, then I seriously despair for America's youth. Aside from the numerous flaws in his plan and his inability to string together a coherent sentence, he seems to think that The Walking Dead is some sort of documentary.
That being said, it seems kind of mean spirited to think that there are a few hundred actors, producers and agents who will spend the week in the mountains laughing at this kid and his delusions of grandeur. If he was just improving a character this would be the funniest thing of all time. Instead it just feels sort of sad.