Given the current recommendation to stay home and practice social distancing, we at the Chicago International Film Festival are looking at past selections from each year of the Festival that you can stream now from home. Stream our past selections as we look forward to the 56th Chicago International Film Festival this October 14-25, 2020. Find the full 56 Films for 56 Years selections here.
Today’s #56Films entry is the zombie exterminating horror comedy Juan of the Dead from the 47th Chicago International Film Festival in 2011, recommended by film critic Alejandro Riera.
Directors: Alejandro Brugués
47th Chicago International Film Festival
Juan is a survivor. He survived Cuba’s 1975 intervention in Angola, the 1980 Mariel boatlift and the island’s Special Period following the collapse of the Soviet Union. He WILL survive this new crisis: a pandemic that’s turning the residents of Havana into zombies. Juan will not let an opportunity go to waste and, alongside trigger happy Lazaro and his son California, opens a zombie exterminating business. Alejandro Brugués’ second-feature may wear its influences on its sleeve (its title is an obvious callback to Edgar Wright’s equally funny zombie masterpiece) but in its heady mix of gore, social and political satire, and affection for its ragtag warriors, Juan of the Dead, an official selection of the 47th Chicago International Film Festival, is the legitimate heir to George Romero’s throne. Juan of the Dead is also a celebration of resilience and of that very Cuban concept of resolver, of making do with what you have. Given our current crisis, we should all be like Juan. – Alejandro Riera, Film Critic