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"Shaun of the Dead," what have ye wrought? A slew of inferior imitations, that's what — one of the latest of which is the 2009 zom-com "Doghouse."

A bunch of blokes in the UK escape their nagging wives/girlfriends/one-night stands for a guys' getaway weekend in a faraway village so they can help one pal lick the wounds left from his divorce. Their agenda is little more than drink until they pass out; fitness activities are not part of the plan.

Unbeknownst to them, however, they're due for quite a bit of sprinting, as the sleepy, abandoned-seeming town is populated only by zombies. And not just zombies, but all-female zombies. There's a bride, a dominatrix, a nurse, a hairdresser, a morbidly obese housewife "? one of every stereotype.

Making a comedy actually funny is hard enough; a horror comedy, even harder. Jake West's film doesn't even quite score on the first account, unless you're into base-level slapstick as the guys attempt to work their way out of their collective pickle via RC trucks and sporting equipment. Copious amounts of gore effects do not compensate. Worse, Christina Cole —? the only good thing in the British TV series "Hex" —? checks out early.

The movie wastes no time jumping into its plot, however thin, yet that means it quickly enters a circular format, doing essential the same scene over and over. If you do put yourself into the "Doghouse," you may wish to watch with the subtitles on, as the accents are laid on as thick as the misogyny. —?Rod Lott


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