The Bye Bye Man
The Bye Bye Man is the kind of film that is so boring and bereft of anything of possible interest that it becomes infuriating.
For the purposes of watching “Survival of the Dead,” I'm perfectly willing to believe in zombies. It's a stretcher, however, to believe in an island off the coast of Delaware where life looks like outtakes from “Ryan's Daughter,” everyone speaks with an Irish accent, and there's a bitter feud between those who believe in capital punishment for zombies, and those who call for their rehabilitation and cure.
How can you kill or rehabilitate a zombie, since by definition it is dead? Here's my reasoning: If it can attack you and dine on your throbbing flesh, it isn't dead enough. George A. Romero is our leading researcher in this area, having reinvented zombies for modern times with “Night of the Living Dead” (1967), and returned to them from time to time, most successfully in the excellent “Dawn of the Dead” (1979).
Zombies, as I have noted before (and before, and before) make excellent movie creatures because they are smart enough to be dangerous, slow enough to kill and dead enough that we need not feel grief. Romero has not even begun to run out of ways to kill them. My favorite shot in this film shows a zombie having its head blown apart, with the skullcap bouncing into the air and falling down to fit neatly over the neck. If that doesn't appeal to you, nothing will.
I've seen a whole lot of zombies killed. I've been cordial over the years with Romero, who in addition to reinventing zombies, demonstrated how horror movies were a low-cost point of entry for independent filmmakers. To him we possibly owe such directors as David Cronenberg and John Carpenter. “Dawn of the Dead” was a biting indictment of the culture of the shopping mall, with most of its action in a landscape of modern retailing and merchandising. It was also funny.