Dead Men Walking (film)

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Dead Men Walking
Dead Men Walking.jpg
DVD cover
Directed by Peter Mervis
Produced by David Michael Latt
David Rimawi
Paul Bales
Written by Mike Watt
Starring Bay Bruner
Griff Furst
Chriss Anglin
Bobby James
Brandon Stacy
Distributed by Asylum Home Entertainment
Release dates
October 25, 2005
Running time
82 min
Language English
Budget 500.000 $

Dead Men Walking is an independent 2005 zombie movie directed by Peter Mervis and written by Mike Watt. It features a zombie outbreak at a maximum security prison. The film can now be seen on the Sci Fi Channel in the United States.


The movie begins with Travis Dee killing many bloodied people infected with an unknown virus trying to eat him. He is able to kill all of the infected, but when the last one is exterminated, its blood splashes on Travis' face, infecting him. The police arrive and arrest him after he attempts to commit suicide to avoid any further infections (which failed due to the shotgun being out of ammo). Travis tries to convince the press and police that they were infected with an experimental bio-toxin, and now he is sick from it. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) don't know if he is right or wrong, so he is sentenced to Haywood Maximum Security Prison.

A CDC worker, Samantha Beckett, is sent to the prison to give more information on Travis. Travis and the new inmates arrive at the facility and are put in a line where they are evaluated by corrections officer, Lieutenant Sweeney, telling them that he is "top of the food chain" in the prison. After noticing Travis coughing heavily and pale, he is sent to the infirmary. Another new arrival, Johnny, is sent to Warden Mahler's office. Mahler tells him not to do anything stupid or make guards angry.

At the infirmary, Travis tells Dr. Goring that the virus spreads through bites and bodily fluids, and then accidentally vomits blood on the doctor. Starting to believe the truth, Goring tells an officer to place him in solitary confinement for quarantine. On the way, Travis vomits blood on several inmates. While Samantha and Mahler talk, a guard lets Travis out of the cell because he is vomiting more blood.

While out, Travis attacks the two guards and Sweeney. Travis manages to bite one guard and Sweeney blows his head off, splattering diseased blood on himself. Sweeney takes the wounded guard to the infirmary while Johnny is questioned there by Samantha about Travis. His story is the same that Travis had been telling others. The bitten guard dies and Mahler, Sweeney, Dr. Goring, Samantha and Johnny try to determine if the virus is real. Samantha examines Travis’ body and sees that the blood indicates he died at least hours ago, though Sweeney shot him just minutes ago.

The dead guard jumps from the slab at the same time as the prison reverend comes in. He and Goring are bitten by the guard before Sweeney shoots him in the head. From the bite and blood splash, Goring reanimates and Sweeney kills him. The group then concludes that the infection is real and must be contained. Jenkins arrives in the room with Mahler’s son, Keith, who has come to visit him. While Samantha tries to call headquarters, the inmates that Travis puked on start to infect others and turn into zombies at the cafeteria. To contain a “riot,” the living guards flee the cafeteria while some stay in the locked room to control the sick that immediately reanimate into zombies. However, the infected guards who escaped start to turn as well and infect the staff and inmates.

As the riot warning alarm sounds, Samantha calls the CDC for assistance and confirms the virus. They tell Mahler that the prison has been quarantined for 18 hours or until Samantha can conclude that the infection has been contained.

Sweeney, Jenkins and Mahler devise a plan to move through the building and gather all the uninfected staff to barricade themselves in the staffroom on the other end of the facility while the guards venture out to kill all infected. He also plans to leave all the uninfected inmates to die, much to Johnny’s dismay. Johnny is sent back to the cell but on the way he knocks out a guard and takes his gun to run for the outside.

Sweeney, Jenkins, Mahler and Keith head to the officers’ office where Sweeney calls for the National Guard to secure the prison and blockade the entire facility. He stays with his decision to leave the inmates for dead but does tell all of them to stay in their cells. Samantha is persuaded by the reverend to leave the infirmary and run for the outer walls. When she leaves, the Reverend shoots himself, knowing he will turn into a zombie if he doesn’t.

Sweeney, Mahler, Keith, Jenkins and many other guards make it to the cell blocks to see that all the inmate and staff left have been infected and zombified. As everyone prepares for the zombies to break out of the cells, Sweeney tells Jenkins that when he turns to shoot him. Mahler, realizing Sweeney is infected, leaves the group to protect his son. The zombies on that side start to follow the two as they slip in zombie blood, trying to reach Mahler’s office. The zombies break out of the cell blocks and run for the guards. They open fire, killing many of them left and right. Seeing that many more are coming, they split up and run inside cells and lock the gates, separating them and keeping firing distance. Samantha meets up with Johnny and they decide to escape together.

Mahler and Keith make a stand in his office. But the son has been infected and kills the father.

After most guards are killed in cells, Jenkins and another guard escape the cell while Sweeney and another stay to fight. Sweeney sees the zombified Mahler and shoots him while stating, “This is for not giving me a raise my last evaluation!” After going completely crazy from the disease, Sweeney shoots everywhere, accidentally hitting his partner guard. Sweeney leaves through a backdoor and lies down there while the zombies break through and kill the shot guard.

Samantha and Johnny move on. He is bitten and stays behind to give her a chance to leave. She flees and kills Sweeney, now a zombie. In the yard, Jenkins is bitten and she puts him out of his misery. A sniper mistakes Samantha for a zombie and kills her.


The film was filmed in the Lincoln Heights Jail in Los Angeles, California, USA.


The film has met with mixed reviews. It currently holds a 3.5/10 rating on The Internet Movie Database. In his review, Tony Schaab of The G.O.R.E. Score called the film "a nice oasis in the desert of straight-to-video zombie flicks" and "worth a look-see for the fan that has seen all the 'popular' undead films and is looking for something else to satisfy their appetite for destruction."

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