10 Recent Zombie Projects That Prove the Genre Will Never Die

10 Recent Zombie Projects That Prove the Genre Will Never Die

Entertainment trends are always shifting, but you can always count on more zombies, eternally heaving themselves out of the grave and invading screens large and small. While, of course, there’s a certain (splattery) sameness across the genre, these 10 recent projects show just how diverse zombie stories have become — a necessary evolution that continually keeps horror fans coming back for more undead entertainment.

Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula

Everybody’s still talking about Yeon Sang-ho’s Train to Busan, but what about its 2020 companion film/sequel, Peninsula? Picking up some time after the chaos of the outbreak that erupts in Busan — but with a different location and set of characters — Peninsula is a post-apocalyptic heist film in the vein of Escape From New York and Mad Max that explores the best and worst kinds of people that emerge when forced to coexist with zombies. (Not available on any Aussie streaming services.)

One Cut of the Dead

If you haven’t yet seen One Cut of the Deadone of the most original, creative, and truly surprising zombie movies ever — well, you’ve got your evening sorted now. Stick with it through the first 30 minutes or so to claim your juicy reward. (Shudder)

Army of the Dead

After all that hullabaloo around superheroes and the Snyder Cut, it was kind of awesome to see Zack Snyder — who made his feature debut with 2004’s excellent Dawn of the Dead remake — return to his horror roots for this 2021 Netflix release. Much like Peninsula, it’s set in a world where zombies have been contained within a certain location, and revolves around a heist that requires sneaking into said location (in this case, the fallen city of Las Vegas) to recover big bucks. It’s not a flawless film, except for the scenes with Tig Notaro, but it’s entertaining — and its huge popularity proved that zombie blockbusters are still thriving. (Netflix)

Blood Quantum

Jeff Barnaby’s 2019 Blood Quantum tells what would feel like a familiar zombie-outbreak saga, if not for two key points that make its story far more thought-provoking: it’s set on a First Nations reserve, and it’s told from the perspective of the Indigenous people who live there. There’s also the twist that only non-Native people are affected by zombie bites. Less surprisingly (but no less delightfully), it also supplies some glorious gore for your horror-hungry eyeballs. (Shudder)

Little Monsters

It’s a raunchy comedy! With kids! And Lupita Nyong’o (playing a kindergarten teacher) and Josh Gad (playing a sleazy children’s show host)! And also… zombies! It might not all fit together perfectly, but there’s no denying that 2019’s Little Monsters (not to be confused with the ‘80s Fred Savage comedy, by the way) stakes out its own very specific territory — and then proceeds to have fun with it. (Hulu)

The Dead Don’t Die

Here’s your reminder that we live in a world where, in 2019, deadpan indie auteur Jim Jarmusch made a deadpan indie zombie movie. with an incredible cast starring Adam Driver, Bill Murray, and Tom Waits. (Hulu)

Zombieland: Double Tap

Granted, it didn’t have the surprising zing of the 2009 original. But the long-awaited 2019 sequel Zombieland: Double Tap was definitely entertaining enough to justify revisiting the main characters (three Oscar nominees and one Oscar winner among them) a decade later — including a certain cameo (also an Oscar nominee, incidentally) included as an end-credits surprise. (Hulu)

All of Us Are Dead

This Netflix series about South Korean teens scrambling to survive a zombie apocalypse dropped 12 binge-worthy episodes in January 2022. It then proceeded to rack up so many views the show — elevated by its endlessly inventive use of its central high-school setting — was renewed for a second season in June. (Netflix)

Tales of the Walking Dead

The Walking Dead prime is heading into its final episodes, and so far it’s been hard to muster up too much excitement for AMC’s inevitable attempts to prolong the zombie series’ pop-culture presence. Until Tales of the Walking Dead, that is. No mere spin-off, this six-episode anthology series tells different, diverse, self-contained tales with star-studded casts (Terry Crews! Parker Posey!) set within the world of the main series, but not necessarily beholden to its many seasons of drama and intrigue. Insert your own “reviving the dead” joke here. (New episodes currently premiere Sundays on AMC)

The Sadness

Technically, Rob Jabbaz’s The Sadness is not a “zombie” movie; its human monsters are infected with a violence-inducing virus, but they still retain most of their brain functions, including active imaginations that enable them to unleash horrifyingly creative torture on their victims. This 2021 Taipei-set tale follows a fairly familiar zombie-outbreak template, though, elevated by elegant cinematography and intense special effects that highlight the main reason for watching it: the positively operatic levels of gore. (Shudder)

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