Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

My cousin Heather would deny this, being as how she is now a big time high powered New York City tax attorney, but she had the worst crush on one Richard Grieco back in the day. When Grieco took over for Johnny Depp on '21 Jump Street’ my cousin Heather the Tax Attorney responded with ‘It’s about time. Depp was for girls, Grieco is for women’. I believe she was all of sixteen at the time when she made that statement. My immediate concern was why she was discussing this with me. Like I gave a damn about Johnny Depp or Richard Grieco back in the day, or even yesterday for that matter. After watching ‘Raiders of the Damned’ it seems that Mr. Grieco doesn’t give much of a damn about himself these days. Somewhere my cousin is trying to burn those Grieco posters while lying about what a big Johnny Depp fan she was when she was a teenager. Come clean girlfriend.

Grieco opens our film, playing some dude named Dr. Lewis and is in a dark room narrating about the destruction of the earth and some evil science created antigen called Agent 9X. I’m of the assumption Grieco either didn’t read the script or just decided to wing it as he went along, because of the way he was stopping and stuttering while delivering his monologue. And I’m not talking in a ‘Hey, I’m acting over here’ kind of way but in a ‘I have no idea what I’m supposed say’ kind of way. From what I could glean from Dr. Lewis’ prattling, his people released this biological warfare weapon AND nuclear weapons at the same time which had a real negative effect on the environment, if you can figure that, and created a world of flesh eating zombies in its wake. This is not a good thing.

So some doctor is in a helicopter taking video of the zombies for some reason or another, mind you the zombies are on the other side of a big wall, and he tells the pilot to get closer so he can get better pictures of the zombies. Stupid Doctor. It just so happens that these are smart thinking zombies who have weapons and stuff and knock the copter out of the sky and take the Doc and his lovely assistant prisoner. When the

news gets to Dr. Lewis back in the underground bunker, he gathers up a small team of out control commandoes to bust in and set the Doc free. The Commandoes have to ride to this big wall on horseback because A.) the last available pilot died in this aforementioned crash and B.) Dr. Lewis says he likes horsies. This is what we’re dealing with here. Anyway, once the commandoes get inside the big wall using their magical big wall displacement unit, they run into a team of zombies led by a zombiefied Colonel Crow (Thomas Martwick) who has plans to RULE THE WORLD! And make zombie love to the captured Docs pretty assistant. They actually laid out in detail how zombies can get erections, but I believe that information is beyond the scope of this article. Regardless Zombies and commandoes go head up with the fate of the remaining 8 or 9 people on earth in the balance.

Sometimes I find that I have an affinity for bad movies done badly, that is if they manage to entertain me on their journey to badness. It’s not often and as such if it does happen it’s usually just plain dumb luck on the part of the filmmakers, and ‘Raiders of the Damned’ received no such luck. The story in this thing was incomprehensible and as it took a pretty simple plot device, that being killing zombies, and tried to add to something extra to it. That is commendable, but the results were a muddled and aimless hunk of hot garbage. The special effects were among the worst ever, but hey, this was a low budget affair and simply the fact they had special effects at all was something, but that doesn’t make them any less crappy. Truth be told, the best thing about this movie was the acting. Not that the performances were any good with the exception of the guy who played the lead zombie, but they weren’t so bad that it would make you want to claw your eyes out. Except for Richard Grieco that is. I have no idea what or who my man Richard was channeling here with a performance that was a mixture of Rain Man meets Tourettes Syndrome, but he made a hard movie to watch just that much more difficult. Good thing he was in only like five minutes of the movie but I’m still pretty sure the majority of the budget for this thing went to tearing him off first considering I haven’t seen any of those other actors in so much as a Tide commercial, and also considering the lack of the budget that went into sets, make up and special effects. I also could’ve done without that scene of zombie love.

‘Raiders of the Damned’ was awful on many levels, but it did look decent and had good sound which is something you just can’t take for granted in these low budget affairs, but Depp makes billions playing gay pirates and poor Richard Grieco gets Depp’s equivalent of his meal per diem doing this crap. Somewhere in New York City a high powered Tax Attorney is weeping.

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