09 October 2009

Zombie Day!

Source: Dumb Things I Have Done LatelyFor reasons inexplicable to me, Monday, October 12th will be zombie day at the UW-M Student Union. Max Brooks will be speaking at 7pm (unfortunately, it seems to be a "zombie preparedness presentation", but i'm holding out for a good Q&A).

Additionally, the UW-M cinema is showing Dead Snow, a Norwegian zombie, Nazi comedy. I haven't seen it, nor have I read a lot about it, but what I have heard has been generally positive. I'm looking for it to be a hilarious update on the French non-classic, J'Accuse.

But, in addition to both of these events (each exciting and worthy of note in its own right), there is also a lecture being given by Patrick Bellegarde-Smith, a professor of Africology called "Do Zombies Exist?"

Overall, Monday promises an array of zombie thinking, satirical zombie preparedness conversation, zombie comedy (zombedy?), & (hopefully) rigorous academic attention. Hope to see you all there.

***Updated: 19 October 2009***

Although I had the pleasure of meeting Professor Bellegarde-Smith after his talk (and he seems like he's a fascinating guy), I very much regret the extent to which he gave up the floor both to a documentary created for Canadian TV & to an open "discussion" of the question. While the documentary did make a fair number of claims, Professor Bellegarde-Smith, an (ordained?) Voodoo Priest merely talked around the issue - he seemed most interested (and this I got mostly from our conversation after the lecture) in the fact that Voodoo, unlike other mystical religions (Sufi, Zen, Kabbalah, even Native American religions) has never had any sort of modern renaissance. No young folks, looking for answers turned to Voodoo en masse as they seemed to many of the other mystical religions. This was accounted for because of race, but these claims didn't go much further, nothing more interesting was said, really.

Now, with Dead Snow, there really was absolutely no disappointment. The movie was quite funny, quite gory (the demise of movie geek Erlend is particularly gruesome {and simultaneously hilarious}). The premise of the movie is a lot like Evil Dead, except in Norway, with Nazis, in the snow...

Finally, Max Brooks' (evidently, son of Mel Brooks) talk was entertaining (and very well attended). Because the premise was a zombie-preparedness lecture, I wasn't too disappointed, but I did feel like his responses to the Q&A was overly glib. Something akin to Stephen Colbert appearing on other shows, still fully in character.

No comments: