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Attack of the Moon Zombies Review


attack of the moon zombies Attack of the Moon Zombies Review

REVIEW: Attack of the Moon Zombies

Attack of the Moon Zombies is the latest in a series of movies by writer/director Christopher R. Mihm that emulate the cheesy sci-fi b-movies of the 50s (other titles by Mihm include Cave Women on Mars and It Came from Another World!). Moon Zombies is the only one I’ve seen, so I can only speak for it, but everything in this movie tried to make it seem like a genuine 50s drive-in flick, from the soundtrack, to the haircuts, to the worn-out (but not overdone) black-and-white film look. There’s a real sense that Mihm is not trying to parody those films in any way, but trying to genuinely, lovingly make one.

Our story takes place entirely on a Lunar base that was established in 1976 (again, a 50s idea of the future). Silent and eccentric newbie Glen (played by Michael Kaiser) is coming aboard to replace retiring Dr. Vincent Edwards (Michael Cook). When showing the newcomer around, Dr. Edwards shows him a strange plant he found in a cave on the moon and they take it back to the base. The plant sprays some powder in a character’s face and the character dies (trying not to give anything away here), returning a few hours later as a strange plant-human hybrid out to get the humans — who, of course, themselves turn into moon zombies if they are indeed got. The rest of the movie is pretty much the characters running around the base, trying to avoid being zombie plant food.

Which isn’t to say the story doesn’t work or is boring. It may be a bit simple, but this is a 50s cheesy movie wannabe here. And it works. The acting is perfect and feels just like pre-method acting, which is to say, a lttle wooden and overdramatic (actress Shannon McDonough really shines in this aspect as Dr. Hackett). Like I said, I don’t know about the previous movies Mihm has done, but I would venture this one is his best, as you can tell this isn’t the crew’s first time attempting this kind of thing. It all gels nicely and nearly flawlessly. It’s entertaining in ways I didn’t expect, one being the comedy aspect. I laughed out loud numerous times, at self-conscious lines like “Yeah well, it sounds like the plot of some.. bad.. drive-in movie,” and especially at the subtitles. I watch all movies with subtitles on whenever possible just to be sure I don’t miss a line of dialogue or anything. Well, the subtitles for this movie were amusing as hell, with funny captions like >>rejection< < when a man is hitting on a girl and the girl slams her book in his face, and when a title card reads “Day 1” the humorously unnecessary subs read “The First Day.”

I was surprised at how much I laughed and was entertained by the film, especially since 50s sci-fi cheese doesn’t hold any kind of special place in my heart; I just think they’re bad movies, just like we have bad movies today, and I only watch the ones with zombies in them (believe me, I get my fill of bad movies that way). But this was so charming and so successful at its goal that the viewer can’t help but admire it. I have to knock off a point for the length — at 99 minutes, it could have been at least 85 — but I still give Attack of the Moon Zombies 7/10 plants. You can get it at http://www.sainteuphoria.com/aotmz.html for a reasonable $9.99.

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The following is an article about the movie in which I and my hubby have cameo appearances—and one line apiece—and for which our dear, departed dog Mortimer was given an associate producer’s credit! Note: some corrections to my quote are 1) I am NOT yet 50!; b) my stalagmite is just over 3 feet tall, NOT man-sized, unless we’re talking midgets/little people, AND I said it was from “Terror from Beneath the Earth” NOT “Cave Women on Mars”; and c) Mihm’s movies are “wonderfully cheesy ’50s drive-in movie homages,” not merely “silly”! I hate being misquoted. She left out the part where I called Mihm “The Roger Corman of Minneapolis,” too, but otherwise, I thought Ms. Ford did a nice job on the piece. Please join us for the premiere on Tuesday, May 25, 2010 at 7 p.m. at the historic Heights Theater in Columbia Heights, Minnesota! For more info and to order tickets, go to <www.sainteuphoria.com>.

Also of note, Mr. Mihm is the creator of the wonderful “Good Grief: Finding Peace After Pet Loss” website! Contact him at <chris@asterisksoftware.com>.

—Sid

An Arden Hills filmmaker’s fans pitch in to

help finance and produce his latest movie.

Marlin Levison, Star Tribune Christopher Mihm displayed some of the props used in his new movie “Destination: Outer Space.” At left is the head of Oculon while the robot at right is named ADAM. The movie will be shown at drive-ins and sci-fi conventions. That’s an asteroid at top left.

‘Destination: Outer Space’
ALYSSA FORD Special to the Star Tribune April 21, 2010

B-moviemaker Christopher Mihm of Arden Hills knew he had a fan base for his black-and-white creature features with their bug-eyed lake monsters, alien-possessed meteorites and matriarchal colonies on Mars.

He’s accustomed to getting fan e-mails from people all over the country, and he’s been able to finance his moviemaking hobby in part through the sale of patches, posters and DVDs of his four previous films: “The Monster of Phantom Lake” (2006), “It Came From Another World” (2007), “Cave Women on Mars” (2008) and “Terror from Beneath the Earth” (2009).

He’s even gotten to the point where he’s pleased (but not surprised) to see fans dress up for his premieres — in ball gowns or their own googly monster eyes made of pingpong balls.

But Mihm says he wasn’t prepared for what happened last year when his fan base pitched in to save his latest film, “Destination: Outer Space.”

It all started when one of Mihm’s financial backers had to back out due to recessionary troubles. “It was a job thing,” said Mihm, with a shrug. “It happens.”

But that left “Destination: Outer Space” in a lurch. “I was kind of racking my brain,” says Mihm, “and I kind of concluded that if I couldn’t figure out a way to raise a little money, I’d have to postpone shooting until I could save some up myself.”

But then Mihm, a 33-year-old freelance computer programmer in his grown-up life, put a notice on his website, www.sainteuphoria.com, asking for $50 donations to the project in exchange for future DVDs, tickets to the premiere on May 25 and “associate producer” credits in the film.

“I knew I’d get maybe four people to do it and that would be it,” Mihm says.

To his great surprise, 50 people signed up to be associate producers for “Destination: Outer Space,” giving this black-and-white B-movie an even bigger budget than it was going to have in the first place.

“I was stunned and pretty touched, too,” says Mihm.

Some fans also offered to help produce the film, donating their time to build sets and engineer monsters. One volunteer was Mitch Gonzales, 45, of Maple Grove, who discovered Mihm’s films while surfing online in 2007.

For “Destination: Outer Space,” Gonzales — a project manager for an injection-molding company by day and a B-movie fan by night — built a starfish-inspired monster out of chicken wire and foam latex with a giant bulbous eyeball for a head. He also created a pair of wiggly antennae for an extra, and was even allowed to make a cameo appearance in the film wearing a tall, made-up forehead. “I was thrilled to be allowed to play in the Mihm sandbox, so to speak,” says the father of two.

Fan Rylan Bachman, 31, of Cambridge, Minn., spent long hours hunting for iron-ore rocks along a railroad bed for an asteroid scene in “Destination: Outer Space.”

“I wanted to find some great rocks with nice pits and crevices,” Bachman says.

Mike Obrecht, 34, of Omaha, made a 14-hour round trip to Arden Hills to help build some sets for the film and play a capitalist alien named B’Kee in a crowded bar scene.

Mihm, 33, says that all of his films have relied heavily on family members and even neighborhood kids from around Arden Hills, but “Destination: Outer Space” is the first one created by the “Mihmiverse” — the name he has given to his small but rabid fan base.

As a result, he says, this production has quadruple the number of sets and costumes of any of his previous movies.

“It’s my B-movie version of ‘Star Wars,’ ” Mihm says.

The reason for all this fan mania is simple, says Sid Korpi, 50, of south Minneapolis, who is such an aficionado of Mihm films that she keeps a man-sized stalagmite in her basement — a souvenir from the set of “Cave Women on Mars.”

“It’s all about Chris,” says Korpi. “When you’re around him, you can’t help but want to get involved in these silly movies. He’s made monsters of all of us.”

Alyssa Ford is a Minneapolis freelance writer.

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