Miscellaneous Queer Monsters

Otto; or, Up with Dead People

movie      fiction

  • Otto; or, Up with Dead People
  • Author: Bruce La Bruce
  • Director: Bruce La Bruce
  • Producer: J
  • Year: 2008
  • Country: Germany|Canada
  • 94 minutes
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A young zombie named Otto appears on a remote highway. He has no idea where he came from or where he is going. After hitching a ride to Berlin and nesting in an abandoned amusement park, he begins to explore the city. In escaping a group of gay-bashers, he finds a casting call for gay zombies to be in the film 'Up with Dead People.'

He meets underground filmmaker Medea Yarn, who begins to make a documentary about him with the support of her girlfriend, Hella Bent, and her brother Adolf, who operates the camera. Meanwhile, Medea is trying to finish 'Up with Dead People,' the epic political-porno-zombie movie that she has been working on for years. She convinces its star to allow the vulnerable Otto to stay in his guest bedroom. When Otto discovers that there is a wallet in his back pocket that contains information about his past, before he was dead, he begins to remember a few details, including memories of his ex-boyfriend. He arranges to meet him at the schoolyard where they met, with devastating results.

Qvamp says:

Otto is definitely not a movie for everyone, as it could best be described as an political-satire-arthouse-gay-zombie-porn. This is a meta-film featuring a humorously-pretentious politically-oriented gay zombie porn film being created within this gay zombie coming-out film. The plot is non-linear, and is sometimes difficult to tell which film a scene falls into. This blending of film within film seems to be purposeful, as one of the characters in the framing story appears to have stepped out of an old-time movie, complete with film scratches and silent-film dialog cards.

The film can be viewed in many ways. It is a film where the Director pokes fun at his own pretentiousness. It is a shock-film featuring gay zombie orgies and zombies screwing open wounds on each other's bodies. It shows the journey of a young many who may be a zombie, or may have retreated into fantasy. It may also be a metaphorical film about AIDS and the dangers of unsafe sex, or of the common plight of those who are different and feared.

Like most other gay zombie films, this film is not meant to be fear-provoking, nor is it exceptionally gory. There are parts that may irritate the average movie-goer, such as times where background noise covers up the dialog (which appears to be purposeful). But if you take this as a cult-film that can be seen on many levels and that has to be watched with a sense of humor, you'll enjoy it.

Rating D-
Queer Vampire Rating C+
Amount of Gay Content sex


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