80s Sci-Fi Horror Comedy Gem Combines Aliens And Zombies, Stream Now Without Netflix

By Brian Myers | Published

Critics who espouse the view that zombie films have become a worn-out film and TV category in the last decade were either not alive or walked blindly through video stores in the 1980s. After the cult following that George Romero’s Night of the Living Dead (1968) produced, flesh-eating zombie films became the rage of the 1970s and surged into the following decade. The market was saturated with these films by 1980, but that didn’t stop filmmaker Fred Olen Ray from giving the world a sci-fi zombie film called Alien Dead.

Flesh-Eating Zombies From Florida

The Alien Dead supposes that a meteor carrying some unknown space plague crashes into a Florida swamp. The polluted water seeps into nearby homes and infects residents, turning them into zombies. At first, these creatures are satisfied with the flesh of alligators, but when this food source dries up, they begin to hunt and feed on the humans who live on the outskirts of the swamp.

Alien Dead sees a lone physician try to find a cure for the plague before it’s too late.

Bad Bad Not Good Bad

To classify Alien Dead as a horror comedy would be to assume that viewers will get both chills and laughs from the production. While what is scary in a film is subjective, almost anyone who sees this movie will state that the only laughs it gets are from those who are laughing at it and not with it. Even for someone who actually enjoys a “bad” movie, the Alien Dead pushes the limits of tolerance throughout its 87-minute run time.

The Acting Is On Par With A School Production

The level of acting expected in this type of production is fairly low, but the performances in Alien Dead place that bar directly on the ground. But even films with the worst acting can still make for a fun watch if there are interesting storylines, intriguing characters, and passable cinematography. Alien Dead lacks these attributes, too, and drops the film into a category that only the most die-hard “bad” movie fans will give it a look and last the entire run time.

Alien Dead fails to bring anything new to the table as a zombie film as it just follows a bunch of infected humans instinctively attacking and eating anyone that makes their presence known. Even the cause of the zombification, a meteorite, lacks originality as a plague that originates outside of our planet has been tried before and with better success.

Fails To Meet The Quality Of Maximum Overdrive

Bad lighting, terrible acting, and a yawn-inducing storyline make Alien Dead not only the worst zombie movie ever produced but a contender for the worst horror movie of all time. In a decade that brought the world The Jar, Jaws: The Revenge, and Stephen King’s Maximum Overdrive, this says a lot. Distribution wasn’t kind to the film, either, as it failed to earn a theatrical release and sat in limbo for two years until it finally found its way onto VHS.

Stream On Amazon Prime If You Want To Never Host Movie Night Again


Alien Dead was a staple at movie rental stores in the 1980s and 1990s, as its multiple cover art variants attracted curiosity. One such variant was almost identical to the Evil Dead movie poster from 1981, leading fans of the latter film to great disappointment when they popped this zombie bomb into their VCRs.

Alien Dead can be seen On Demand with Prime.