Our editor-in-chief Nate Yapp is proud to have contributed to the new book Hidden Horror: A Celebration of 101 Underrated and Overlooked Fright Flicks, edited by Aaron Christensen. Another contributors include Anthony Timpone, B.J. Colangelo, Dave Alexander, Classic-Horror.com's own Robert C. Ring and John W. Bowen. Pick up a copy today from Amazon.com!

Premutos: Lord of the Living Dead (1997)



Viewing Premutos is like being a little kid again, waking up earlier than everyone else on Christmas Day to see what's under the tree. Let me just start off by saying I can't even remember the last time I was this impressed with a zombie film that thrives on gore to the most extreme extent. There are no words to emphasize how far this film goes with it's ultra-dose of blood, brains, innards, bodily explosion and dark humor. Director Olaf Ittenbach (The Burning Moon, Legion of the Dead) can easily become any splatter fan's new found hero within five minutes of this film. Of course, it's not perfect; But, the main flaws of the movie aren't really the movie itself, it is basically the horrible DVD transfer...

This is the story of Premutos, the first fallen angel, even before Lucifer. All through history he has been summoned again and again to wreak the most disgusting havoc upon earth and mankind. He is the only force capable of resurrecting the dead, and turning them into an army of flesh craving, zombified ghouls. The focused story lies in the present. We have a wimpy mommas boy named Mathias (played by Olaf Ittenbach) who cannot get these horrible visions out of his head. Every time he has pain inflicted upon him, he is taken back into time during war-torn Germany, as well as medieval times. Mathias recieves a present from his militant stepfather. It seems step dad has dug up a case from the backyard that contains an ancient book that he thinks Mathias might be interested in. While his Mom and step-dad are downstairs with old friends, he begins reading brief sections from the book, not knowing he could be unleashing the hellish monster Premutos once again, along with his army of hungry undead.

Premutos has it all. Everything from a Dominatrix sister, a gun shooting chainsaw swinging step-dad, to a deep DEEP sex scene that is questionable whether it is real or not; Not to mention a substantially healthy load of nice looking zombies. It also pays homage to classic horror films like Evil Dead, Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead, Scanners, even the dubbed version has a reference to the action opus First Blood (one of the funniest parts of the film).

It is hard to tell if the acting is bad or not, this is the main problem here. It was released in 1997, but now just finally seeing light here in the U.S. The original language is German, but the kicker is that it doesn't contain English subtitles. This is really annoying to an extent. The English dubbing is....acceptable because the movie is so great, but at times it seems worse than some of the oldest kung-fu dubbed films from late night TV. If you can get past the horrible dubbing, or if you speak German you are in for a treat.

If you are a fan of blood-caked gore, look no more, friends. This movie easily ranks up with Dead Alive, at times it's almost questionable which is gorier. The movie is sprayed with scenes here and there, but the 30 minute climax is all out, non stop splatter. We have a glorious kill count of 139 here, no lie, and they are seemingly all shown. There are easily at least 20-30 head explosions (in a row!), but you will lose count. Zombie deaths range in every imaginable weapon thought of, from a chainsaw to a tank (which is great because the full body explosions are just big balls of splatter and disgust). The scenes of zombie feasting are at their most extreme in recent history...

This could easily be labeled as a zombie classic if it could be viewed with subtitles. The dubbing works at times, pitching off a slew of funny one-liners, but at other moments it's just really bad. The sound editing could be re-mastered too. Even so, this is a masterpiece speaking in low budget standards; Highly recommended to strong fans of Dead Alive, Bad Taste, or even Re-Animator. Count the days until Olaf Ittenbach's next film will be released to the U.S. At the same time though, come across this first to tide yourself over. It is a definite promise if you end up liking it, you won't just watch it once...

DVD contains an hour long documentary on the making of Premutos with writer/director Olaf Ittenbach. Plus, a whole load of trailers for other Shock-O-Rama films.