Night of the Living Relatives (2015) – By Philip Smolen


Kelly (Laurel Johnston) is at her wit’s end about her husband’s sister Rose (Shelena Walden). You see John (Shawn Whitsell) wants to leave things the way they are. Rose has been living with the couple since she was turned into a zombie. She cooks and cleans for them, but she seems to get agitated whenever Kelly raises her voice. Now John has read an interesting editorial in the paper that equates zombies with terrorists. It seems that in order to destroy both of these anti-social types, you’ve got to shoot them in the head. Kelly thinks this is a great idea and suggests shooting Rose, but John can’t remember where he put the couple’s gun. Just then, some of the couple’s zombified friends show up at their front door hoping to have Kelly and John for dinner.

“Night of the Living Relatives” is an eight minute zombie spoof from director Tom Delfino. It’s a comedy of manners that suggests that zombies have become so plentiful that they’ve actually attained their own social status. This is all very confusing for John and Kelly who don’t know what to do with their zombified relative. Despite Rose’s proclivities for munching on living flesh, John ignores the situation and can’t bring himself to end his sister’s life.

This is an amusing short that gets its humor from the absurdity of the situation. Delfino is parodying many of the classic Hollywood social satires from the 1930s where the rich are taught a lesson by an intelligent person who they hire as a servant. I would have liked to have seen Delfino add more scenes where Rose fouls up social gatherings, but as it is the flick still made me smile. “Night of the Living Relatives” is not laugh out loud funny, but it is charming and you can tell Delfino’s tongue is planted firmly in his cheek for the entire eight minutes.

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