We first meet Dr. Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs) at Switzerland's University of Zurich Institute of Medicine. He needed a test subject for his reagent. A glowing neon lime green liquid compound he hopes will reanimate the dead.
He succeeded with Dr. Hans Gruber (Alan Berry). But the dosage was too much. The experimental drug has side effects. The spark is temporary. Fleeing prosecution, West returns to the States. To continue his unsanctioned clinical trials.
He gains employment at Massachusetts’ medical school Miskatonic University. Acquires a roommate in med student Dan Cain (Bruce Abbott). Turns the apt building’s basement into a makeshift lab. Complete with stolen medical equipment.
West repeatedly butts heads with Dr. Carl Hill (David Gale). Who stole credit for his mentor Dr. Gruber’s life’s work. Cain’s girlfriend Megan Halsey (Barbara Crampton) thinks West is creepy. He’s always staring at her whenever she comes over.
Hill has Dr. Alan Halsey’s (Robert Sampson) ear. He convinces the dean there’s something unethical about West and Cain. Soon both are expelled. But that doesn’t stop progress. In an attempt to prove the reagent works, they break into the morgue to inject a corpse. It goes on a wild killing spree. One of the victims is Dr. Halsey himself. The reagent turned him into a zombie.
Troublemaker Hill finds out about West’s research and evidence. He doesn’t call the police. He wants sole credit. He tries blackmailing West. That’s not the only thing he wants. Hill’s obsessed with Megan. West kills Hill instead. And because he can’t help himself. West injects the body.
In a bizarre twist, the suddenly psychic reanimated Hill has zombie Halsey kidnap his own daughter. Who didn’t know poppa was dead. Hill tries to force her into a sexual relationship. Never mind that he’s dead and headless. Maybe she’ll think it’s kinky. West and Cain rescue Megan before anything gross happens.
Lobotomizing corpses gave Hill power over them. At some point, Hill injected many deceased. They kill anyone in their path. Zombie Halsey is turned into kibble. A mutated Hill tries to murder West. Cain takes the stash of reagent to continue the good work. Before Cain and Megan can escape the building, she’s killed. A distraught Cain gives her a shot. Something goes wrong….
The good: The entire cast. The script and dialogue. Medical inspired credits roll. Snarky West. Lovecraft. Who thought of strangulation by intestine?
The bad: The “head” scene. If you’ve seen it, you know. If not, prepare to go EWW! Naked zombie corpses out for a light snack.
The ugly: Not for the squeamish.
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