Shattered Politics #91: Abraham Lincoln vs. Zombies (dir by Richard Schenkman)


Well, here we are!  Last month, I started the process of watching and reviewing 94 movies about politics and politicians.  I started Shattered Politics with D.W. Griffith’s 1930 film Abraham Lincoln and now, three weeks later, we’ve reached the final day of Shattered Politics.  We have four more films to review and what better way to start things off than by taking a look at yet another films about Abraham Lincoln.

Now, I’ve previously reviewed three films about Abraham Lincoln.  I’ve reviewed D.W. Griffith’s creaky 1930 version.  I’ve reviewed Henry Fonda as Young Mr. Lincoln.  And, of course, I’ve reviewed Daniel Day-Lewis in Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln.  And, on the very site, reviews of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter have been posted by both Arleigh and Ryan The Trash Film Guru.  (For the record, I’ve also reviewed The Lincoln Lawyer and The Conspirator. So there.)  That’s a lot of films about Abraham Lincoln and why not?  He’s our greatest President.  He freed the slaves, he won the Civil War, and, ultimately, he was the first President to be martyred by assassination.

However, when one considers all of those films about Abraham Lincoln, it’s hard not to notice that none of them featured zombies.  And, considering how much we love zombies here at the Shattered Lens, that has always struck me as being a major oversight.

So, thank God that, in 2012, the Asylum released a film called Abraham Lincoln vs. Zombies.

For that matter, thank God for the Asylum.  Mainstream critics and snarky blogger types love to criticize Asylum-produced films but you know what?  Nobody makes films quite like the Asylum.  Quite frankly, people who attack an Asylum film for having a low-budget or for being over the top are missing the point.  Asylum films are supposed to be fun.  They’re the type of films that are meant to be watched with a group of your closest and funniest friends.  At their best, Asylum films are movies that you laugh with as opposed to laughing at.

As far Abraham Lincoln vs. Zombies is concerned, everything you need to know about the film is right there in the title.  The film opens with young Abe Lincoln decapitating his zombified mother and then jumps forward several decades.  Abe Lincoln (played, with a lot of gravity and melancholy by the excellent Bill Oberst, Jr.) is now President.  When he discovers that a zombie outbreak has occurred at Fort Pulaski, Lincoln takes a break from writing the Gettysburg Address and leads a group of secret service men down to the fort.  With the help of Gen. Stonewall Jackson (Don McGraw), young Teddy Roosevelt (Canon Kuipers), future lawman Pat Garrett (Christopher Marrone), and a handsome, alcoholic Southern actor who is using the name John Wilkinson (Jason Vail), Lincoln kills a lot of zombies and even reunites with a former lover (Rhianna Van Helton).

And, seriously, you have to love a film that features Abraham Lincoln using a scythe to chop off the heads of the undead.  If you’re watching a film like this and you’re worrying about narrative logic or historical accuracy, then you may be taking life a little bit too seriously.  The title promises Abraham Lincoln and zombies.  And the film totally delivers.

And how can you not appreciate that?

2 responses to “Shattered Politics #91: Abraham Lincoln vs. Zombies (dir by Richard Schenkman)

  1. I actually saw this premiere on SyFy and I couldn’t change the channel to watch something else if my life depended on it. I can’t even say if I liked it or not, but damn it I was going to finish watching it.


  2. Pingback: 4 Shots From 4 Films: Primary Colors, Dick, FDR: American Badass, Abraham Lincoln vs. Zombies | Through the Shattered Lens

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