4/9/04 Ain't It Cool News     http://www.aintitcool.com/display.cgi?id=17343

LIVING DEAD GIRL - directed by Jon Springer, this a genre of film I've never seen before: a silent-zombie-movie! Anyway, the first part of the movie is a hilarious silent-movie spoof; then the tone shifts to a grotesque, full-color, Romero-style gorefest; then, the third act transcends into the arena of genius, with Mark Borchardt of American Movie as Jesus! If I had to pick a favorite movie from the showcase, this would be it, but I'm a sucker for a good zombie flick, plus the soundtrack features "Harry, You're A Beast!" by the greatest band ever, the Mothers of Invention! 5 out of 5.    - Mr. E

 

4/21/04 City Pages     http://www.citypages.com/databank/25/1220/article12061.asp

The local manifestation of zombiemania is the nine-minute "Living Dead Girl" by Twin Cities-based goremeister Jon Springer. (Having graced the Central Standard and Minneapolis/St. Paul festivals, the film screens at Bryant-Lake Bowl's "Cinema Lounge" on Wednesday, April 21 at 7:00 p.m.) But while Springer's silent movie-style saga, some of it shot around the Mall of America, is a near-PowerPoint enumeration of images from Romero's original Dawn, it actually answers to an even higher calling. Once bitten, the title character (Nadine Gross) staggers down a would-be Romeroesque Twin Cities street only to discover a gaunt, white shroud-bearing, hangdog Jesus H. Christ (played by none other than Mark Borchardt, icon of American Movie). Before you can say, "Eat of my body, drink of my blood," the Living Dead Girl grabs the Lord's wrist and...

Seems to me the secret to Springer's impending success outside the state lies less in the arm-munching side of the equation than in the holy-rolling side. Like the big-haired Jesus freaks of Christian metal, Springer aims to cross over through his canny deployment of a quintessentially adolescent form: in his case, old-school horror. Indeed, Springer has become adept at tucking born-again messages into traditionally unsanitary places: His "Heaven 17" features a lecherous, vampiric villain who performs third-trimester abortions; his comic "Heterosapiens" has straight man John A. Seed scouring the retro-futurist Simulingus for a sex fantasy that's divine. In "Living Dead Girl," the director delivers his heroine unto an abstract reverie of Minneapolitan church spires and stained-glass facades: the do-it-yourself recipe for Elysian fields, I suppose. The punch line: There's a spiritual meaning behind the commercial surface of the godless zombie picture.

Never mind that Springer's finale has the soft punch of a public service announcement's last beat. This guy is onto something that has legs: Christian trash art that has been vacuum-cleaned of messianic pomposity--just in time to capitalize on the emergence of "mainstream" fundamentalist pop art la Gibson's Passion. Up to now, Springer has complained (or bragged?) about the necessity of self-financing his movies. But on the evidence of "Living Dead Girl," I'd say he might as well start speed-dialing brokers to pick out his new digs in Bel Air.     - Matthew Wilder

 

Fantasia Film Festival   http://www.fantasiafestival.com/en/films/film_detail.php?id=1176

The dead rise, the living begin to be eaten and a couple barricade themselves into an old home. Sound familiar? Think again. It's been called everything from "Christian trash art" to "hilarious silent movie spoof", and Jon Springer's strange little zombie film is a bit of both. It's also a ride through the history of film language, incorporating 20's iris-in's, 60's docu style, 70's splatter and beyond, from Carl dreyer to George Romero, complete with a Zappa tune and an appearance by Mark Borshardt, all shot in 35mm at 18 f/p/s. Lots of grisly fun and a VERY impressive achievement.     -Mitch Davis, Festival Programmer

 

4/15/04 Minneapolis Star Tribune

"Four Stars!"

Festivals so far:

2003 Central Standard Film Fest - Minneapolis 

    2003 Milwaukee International Film Fest

2003 SMMASH Fest - Minneapolis

      2004 Minneapolis St. Paul Int. Film Fest

DV Cinema Showcase #8 - Minneapolis

Fantasia Festival 2004 - Montreal

2004 Leeds Horror Animation Fest - UK