Posts Tagged gore

Battle of the Bone (2008)

Battle_of_the_Bone_DVD_coverWritten, directed and produced by George Clarke

Certificate:18. Run time: 90 minutes.

Billed as Northern Ireland’s first kung fu/zombie film, George Clarke has achieved nothing short of a miracle with this fast-paced tale of three friends battling against sectarian thugs and drug-crazed zombies. Owing much to the work of George A Romero and Japanese gore-fest movies, Battle of the Bone was shot on a micro-budget of just £10,000. Despite this, Clarke managed to get a cameo role from popular UTV newsreader Pamela Ballentine playing herself. Most of the shooting of this film was done on location, so virtually no money was spent on expensive sets. Action takes place in the open air, a pedestrian subway, a grain silo and a paper warehouse in the docklands, a city centre multi-storey car park and shopping mall, and culminates on the steps of an inner city church.

The story takes place in Belfast on the Twelfth of July as three friends; David, Scott and Jill, try to get back home to East Belfast in the aftermath of a huge inter-communal riot. All the river bridges are blocked by burning cars except for a pedestrian bridge guarded by a bunch of thugs. David falls foul of these guys and finds himself and his two friends running and fighting for his life though the city docklands.

In the meantime, an accidental spillage of a new drug has turned the staff and inmates of the local mental hospital into crazed zombies. These create havoc as they attack loyalist bandsmen in their practice hall, Twelfth revellers waiting at ‘the field’ to see the bands and a courting couple in the Botanic Gardens.

The three friends think they’re safe having eluded the thugs from ‘the other side’ only to run into a greater danger; the zombie hordes pouring into the city centre.

Battle of the Bone is fast-moving with a pulsating soundtrack that really moves the action along. There’s genuine tension at times, but it’s also a lot of fun with plenty of over-the-top fake blood and gore. It’s obvious that the young inexperienced cast had a ball making this frenetic film.

The last couple of minutes are a wee bit lame but not enough to spoil the fun. The best scene is where two doctors in the ‘nuthouse’ lark about singing and playing the piano totally unaware of the frenzied zombies menacing them. It’s great stuff.

George Clarke has come up with what ought to be a genre classic. If he can do such a fine job with this kind of a budget, what will he be able to do in future efforts with a bigger budget? Things look promising for him and his Yellow Fever Productions.

The DVD bundles an interesting documentary showing how the film was made, a number of deleted scenes and a theatrical trailer with the main feature.

Reviewed by David Kerr

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Edinburgh Fringe: VIRTUOUS FLOCK


by Billy Barrett

C Venues, C Soco, Venue 348, Edinburgh Festival Fringe
4 – 21 August 2010 @ 1.20pm (50 mins)
£7.50 – £9.50

book tickets

Reviewed by Jacqueline Sharp

On a lazy afternoon what could be more exciting than a A dark tale of gothic gore?

This tale certainly lived up to its promise with dark comedy and gothic gore at its best, inspired by Le Theatre du Grand-Guignol and the Victorian weekly serial booklets known as “Penny Dreadfuls”.

As the tale unfolds into the murder of three women this story is not for the faint hearted, with buckets of gore and blood, murder, nuns, Catholicism, coffins, graveyards, barons, servants, a wife, and a songstress mistress who sings gothic opera in a bath!

Revenge is the moral of this gory tale presented by N10 Productions, formed by producer/director Lauren Overs, from Muswell Hill, London.

The talented young cast are extremely convincing in their roles. They engaged very well with a very receptive audience, who seemed to laugh continuously at the dark humour, and enjoy the musical scores and the dark gruesome lyrics! I actually thought I was there in real time!

Very entertaining overall! Those who go to see this production should take a macabre sense of humour with them as some scenes are very grotesque, although they are not meant to be offensive!

I recommend this production for those who do not get shocked or offended by gore, blood and the grotesque.

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