This by no means is a twisted version of Tombstone or Silverado, rather it comes from director Paul Winters, with only his second horror film, the previous creation The Freeway Maniac (1989), and even though his latest production a western influence film, it doesn’t list itself as a crossover horror-western flick. In fact, this movie initially had the title Cowboys Zombies, playing on the theme reoccurring lately in the horror genre, such as Cowboys versus Vampires (2010) or Cowboys and Zombies (2011), but settle on one, which might attract The Walking Dead fans. While the concept horror-western may seem unusual to many, it actually isn’t, but narrowing that down to include zombies, shockingly still popular, The Quick and the Undead (2006) and Dead 7 (2016) just to name two, but even more projects find themselves announced in this slightly obscure subgenre. Paul’s movie achieved distribution from Wild Eye Releasing, notes the type of film quickly to many fans of the genre, this beastie actually masks itself among the tumbleweeds, which actually have more interest than the entire film. Many different elements collide in the story, cowboys, zombies, Indians, and a meteorite all while battling absent budget, winters’ knows the western genre well-enough, but the mixing of these various elements destines the movie to an early grave.
Set in 1870s Arizona, the plot sees Marshall Frank Wilcox (Paul Winters) escorting a ruby outlaw to the frontier town of Crumpit, for some hanging justice, noting no appeals process in place, as one cries out for God, please, give these people a sign a meteor strikes, yet they still hung. In the moment of their deaths, the two criminals become zombies; quickly enough slow staggering zombies emerge from multiple directions, craving human flesh. The townspeople, who none of them look their roles, a tad too much fakery, too much suspension of disbelief require investment for a waning entertaining movie. Soon everyone pulls together, surprising setting aside their personal differences and the varied multicultural backgrounds (not further explore), a black Army Sergeant (A. Calion Maston), Apache Chief (Lee Whitestar), Jasper (Mark Trombino) among others holdup in the town’s saloon to avoid the dead and as much gore as possible. Joining the survivors, Preacher Black (Greg Bronson, who starred in Mimic and who passed on in January 2017) and of course Wilcox, who provides much of the narration and noting the customary clichés whenever possible. When it comes to abandon their primary location, they pile on a handcar pump trolley, killing zombies in the flimsiest manner possible, and aided by a small war party Indians who amazing appear out of nowhere.
One would think that a movie filled with gunslingers, wild west justice, a saloon and could use the terrific Bone Tomahawk (2015) as a blueprint would have a fun quicken pace, however not the case here, rather a slow drunken stupor for the entire movie. The story-lacked cohesive to the scenes, allowing boredom to set in, in other words, the audience will find themselves shifting on their couch, restless and likely not paying attention. The zombies’ appearances ideally unimpressive, noting a few times the latex makeup applications appear very visible, while the sound works fine, the viewers can hear the undead, especially one of them barking as a dog. The cast tries their best to carry the film, but many performances present themselves very silly and wooden. Interesting enough the music contains hints of two 1960s films 13 Ghosts and Psycho, subtle but definitely presents for the train ear and knowledgeable horror fans.
Sadly, this movie doesn’t give it much to make it a worthwhile investment of time or cost, rather the illusion of haunted ghost town would carry more weight with the audience this production lacks all the desire for anyone’s serious attention. Currently this movie ranks as a 3.1/10 on IMDB, 33-people gave it 10 while 37 gave it 1, therefore the final verdict awaits at the gallows.