A good zombie movie should be two things: 1. campy 2. gory. There are some exceptions with regards to the amount of cheese-dick that can factored into the first golden rule (see 28 Days/Weeks Later, Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead, and that's about it). Seriousness as it pertains to zombie movies usually doesn't cut the carotid artery. This film has both aforementioned necessities in spades.
As the title suggests, a horde of rampaging zombies are sweeping through a town on the night of senior prom, endangering the chances of dudes getting into the knickers of their dates. Somebody was asleep at the wheel at Homer Simpson's nuclear power plant and released something fierce into the air and corpses started sprouting like spring daffodils in the local cemetary.
A group of rag-tag kids band together and decide that they need to fight off the rampaging hordes to save the kids at school (how noble!). They are comprised of the veritable who's who: there's the 'rebellious' dude who has no regard for authority, his girlfriend that just wants a normal, 'serious' boyfriend, who can't stand his antics, his nerdy buddy who tries to keep him out of trouble at school but becomes guilty by association, the girl he likes but doesn't have the balls to make a move on, and the crazy, over the top redneck (who replaces the jock dude in these types of movies) is the 'tough' guy.
So the kids storm the neighborhood, fending off zombies and run into a garage band composed of kids that go to the school (playing music that's a mix of punk and really bad metal). They've found out that they can control the zombies and make them docile creatures with the strum of a guitar pick, a fingering of the bass guitar, and a bash or two behind the kit. All the kids band together and meet up with their gym teacher, who also happens to be an ex-marine. How convenient!
After storming the neighborhood, they head to the school where the dance is being held. The buddy of the rebellious leader along with the girl (who he doesn't have the cajones to ask out), make their way to the bathroom. She gets bitten after going into a stall to make a tinkle. She then becomes a zombie and in turn, bites him. And in one absolutely hysterical scene, they play tonsil hockey in the bathroom stall. I wonder if a dude can get his zombified wee-wee up?
Having one last heroic standoff in the gymnasium (which includes a performance by said garage band to keep the zombies subdued), the kids scramble and escape from the school. The gang of the walking dead are wiped out after the marine gym teacher (who has planted bombs around the school) makes the place go KABOOM! Yay!!
Dispensing all the necessary elements associated with a good zombie film and pushing the gore factor to 11, Dance of the Dead is a blast. An instant classic, and great spin, on an otherwise seemingly exhausted genre.
Cortez the Killer