Sparks of life threaten to reanimate Fido, a zombie comedy that feels late to the bloody punch bowl. Yet the real hindrance here isn’t bad timing, but the movie’s tiresomely chirpy 1950s Father Knows Best setting, which wears out its welcome in seconds. (Wasn’t this kind of parody old in the ’80s?) As we learn in one of those jittery duck-and-cover mock educational films, American soldiers fought waves of the undead in the Zombie War and prevailed, turning their vanquished foes into gardeners and butlers for well-scrubbed suburban families. One such clan consists of status-seeking mom Helen (Moss), bread-earner Bill (Baker) and little Timmy (Ray), lonely until the family acquires “Fido” (Connolly), a soulful walking corpse.Forgetting the pointless Ike-era context for a second, several moments call out for a more serious treatment: the forlorn gaze of a trophy girlfriend gone bluish; the rite of passage that comes when a 12-year-old gets his first pistol (“It can come in handy!” confides Dad). Fido, though, is content with its far-from-heavenly message: Zombies are people too. That’s an absurd sentiment given the lengths gone to achieve it. The best horror movies say the exact opposite: People are zombies too.
Cast and crew