Arriving in Home Video, Ancient Korea is Rampant with Zombies!

27 Feb

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Ancient Korea has a problem and it’s coming from two fronts. Night Demons are everywhere, and there’s a plot to overthrow the Young dynasty (Josen period, 1392–1897). To say which is worse, fans of Asian horror will have to see. Rampant is now out on home video by Well GO USA Entertainment.

The bonus materials are light. It consists of a making-of and behind the scenes piece, discussing production elements. With this work, attention is more with the story! The set design is spot on to bring this feudal period to life.

When these creatures hold the country in the palm of their hands and the empire is falling apart, just who will reign supreme kept me glued. Curiously, these monsters exhibit vampire-like behaviour too. Ultimately, it’s a martial arts and zombie genre mashup which is rarely done. Korean made Train to Bosun is tough to beat. This film is set in a different time period where no real comparisons can be made narrative-wise. Both are beautiful cinematically, and the terrors….

Seeing Lee Chung (Hyun Bin) ride a horse at full speed and executing zombies with ease (or beheading a few along the way) is far more satisfying than in a modern film with a shotgun to an undead face. He has a lot to deal with, especially when the enemy is really with Minister of Military Kim Ja-joon (Jang Dong-gun).

In some ways, this film is Army of Darkness without the time travelling hero and humour associated with it. Unless everyone helps each other, nobody will survive. Thankfully, Chung has allies. He’s teamed with Deok-hee (Lee Sun-bin), who is very skilled with the bow. They do great things, and perhaps Korea can be saved.

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