Ah, 50’s. Whether you call it as American Dream or Republicans wet dream, it is always depicted as a nice/charming era when people lived in suburb and people were being nice to each other. Although I’m kinda suspicious that the whole era sounds too nice to be true or not, I love architecture and designs from that era A LOT.
By the way, there’s a film that tries to make fun a concept of peaceful 50’s and how to live with differences. It’s Fido! Sadly, it falls into a “Good idea/not-so-good execution” type of film. But first, let’s get into what I like about it.
“Conquest the Planet of Zomcom”
Here’s the premise of Fido: In the 50’s, a mysterious radiation from space turned dead corpses into zombies. The war had been going on and on. But luckily, there was a company named Zomcon who found a way to control zombies by putting electric collar into zombies…and they would behave like your friends/maid.
It somehow reminds me of Conquest of the Planet of the Apes, which has similar premise: there was an outbreak that killed lots of pets, so people use apes as their new pets/slave. Except that in Fido, if you don’t turn Zombie into your friendly workers, it will kill you. So it’s a tough question whether this method sounds better than shoot-and-kill-em method or not because, basically, Zomcon is a monopoly in this business. From milk delivery company that uses zombies as milkmen to newspaper delivering, it seems pretty clear that Zomcon is the only one who receive more and more money (?) while exploiting zombies in one way or another. But if Zomcon doesn’t exploit them, they will kill you and probably turn you into one of them.
“Day of the Dead meets Leave it to Beaver”
What about the plot? Well, a young kid named Timmy befriends with Fido, a zombie that his mom brings to home because “everybody has it, so why not?” Sadly, Timmy’s dad thinks that zombies should be killed and things get more intense when Fido kills a neighbor because his collar stops working at the time and two bullies who always making fun of Timmy are “injured” by Fido.
As you can see, the film tries to explore the theme of “Why can’t we be friends?” just like in Day of the Dead. Basically, either Timmy’s Dad or a guy at Zomcon is Captain Henry Rhodes. He thinks all zombies should be abolished, while our Timmy is basically Dr. Matthew “Frankenstein” Logan, who believes that we can be friends…not just a labor or deserved to get killed. But instead of doing it in pure horror style, the film is created in Leave it to Beaver meets Lassie style. You know? A nice young kid (which some nowadays teenagers might call him “dumb” or “stupid kid”) somehow gets into trouble but, uh-oh, problem finally resolved in the end with moral lessons of the day. The whole concept sounds really great, doesn’t it? However…
Good idea/not-so-good execution
I’m sorry. As a film that advertised as “Laugh your head off”, Fido doesn’t make me laugh at all. I know the film tries A LOT to make a joke, but somehow it fails. Plus, some characters in this film is annoying to me. Seriously, when these characters get killed I clap my hands and almost chant “Hoorayyyy!!!” because I don’t have to see or hear them anymore.
For instance, let’s take a look at Timmy’s dad. I know that he hates zombies because of his past experience. But here, basically he IS Captain Henry Rhodes. He shocks Fido many times and always has bad attitude towards him. It happens so frequently that somehow drive me nuts.
Overall, it has lots of ambitions and really good scenery. There are few scenes that look a lot like original Night of the Living Dead, but if you want hilarious zombie flicks, try Shaun of the Dead or Return of the Living Dead 1 or 2.