When I saw the title in the comedy genre of the On Demand Channel of Brighthouse, I immediately thought of Shaun of the Dead, which was a very funny zombie movie from the UK. My curiousity was so peaked that I had to get the movie just because of the title.
Juan de la Muerta, in English, is Juan of the Dead, or in my head, One of the Dead. The movie is subtitled in English. That may put a lot of people off right there. That's too bad. The lines are funny written, in body language, timing and delivery..
The movie begins with a man lying on a raft made of what appears to be cocunuts held together with fishing netting. His foot is hanging off of the makeshift raft. Reminiscent of jaws, the shot then goes below the water and "swims" to the surface. Speaking of reminiscent, there were quite a few "tributes to" in this movie; Bruce Lee and Quentin Tarantino and the original Shaun of the Dead, just to name the immediately recognizable ones.
Like Shaun of the Dead, Juan has a chunky, bungling and totally adorable friend. Unlike Shaun of the Dead, Juan has a daughter, his chunky friend has a son. Juan also has a transgender friend named China and her beau, a hunk of steroids who resorts to a blindfold to keep from fainting every time he sees bloodspatter). There would be a lot more people to help those still living, but Juan's friend kept accidentally killing them.
Juan is an entrepeneur and begins an enterprise killing zombie loved ones. ("Hola, Juan de la muerte"). The ensemble of actors work together like a greased bicycle chain.
There is one dance scene that may have been tipping a hat to someone but was so original and hilarious that I literally guffawed through it. And I am not a guffawer by any means. I'll try not to give too much away, but China and Juan are handcuffed together and end up doing a histerical dance scene that is anything but a dance scene. It is a piece of genius, a gem that will be completely missed by the critics.
This movie a 69% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and was given 2.5 stars by some small minded moron, but it is just as good, if not better than Shaun of the Dead.
Out of a rating of 5, I give it a
4 for originality but only because someone came up with the concept first.
4.5 for execution
4.5 for the script
4.5 for line delivery and timing. There is a scene where Juan's friend pulled a joke on him that was perfect in it's delivery and timing.
4.5 for acting
4.5 for scenery
4 for make-up and costumes (how hard is it to make zombies?)
4.5 for the beginning of the movies
4.5 for the Quenton Trarantino ending
4.5 for the special effects. The building blew up, went down and the sun shone through the empty place on Juan and his friend so they could tan.
Overall, this movie is completely under-rated. It is the funniest movie I've seen all summer and I saw Hangover 2.
I hope you expand your horizons over the sea to Cuba, see a little of their city before it burns to the ground.