Cemetery Man - *

Cemetery Man is a very, very strange film that can’t ever find a consistent mood, and ends up being a spotty and repetitive black comedy. Rupert Everett is Francesco Delamorte, a graveyard watchman, who, along with his trusty henchman Gnaghi (Francois Hadji-Lazaro) is forced to do some rather unpleasant overtime work. It seems that a curious plague affects the dead in Buffalora cemetery…seven days after death, the dead come back, and may only be put to final rest by a bullet (or any sharp instrument) to the brain. He takes these extra duties rather nonchalantly, until the ‘returners’ (as he calls them) are people he knows. Add to this a series of identical but unrelated beautiful women, a horrific tragedy involving nuns and boy scouts, an unsolved string of murders, ghostly dancing lights, a talking head, political conspiracies, metaphysical dilemmas, Death personified, and some sex for good measure, and you’ve got the ingredients for a good black horror/comedy, right? Well…yes…the film has a whole lot of the necessary ingredients, but it doesn’t seem to know what to do with them. While some of the bizaare turns of events are amusing, others simply leave you scratching your head. The film never takes one theme and builds upon it (in fact, the zombies, numerous in the first hour of the film are surprisingly scarce in the final half-hour). When director Michele Soavi does latch onto an idea, it is beaten to death. The end result might still become a cult film, simply due to the strange plot, but it is nowhere near the inspired insanity it strives for.

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