For example, Tina’s willingness to basically cripple herself with debt just to finish this doomed film is certainly naive, but it’s also nothing short of admirable. The film’s director, John, is talented and dedicated to his craft — a perfectionist on a distinctly imperfect set — but can’t fully commit to his dream job because he has to support himself with a day job at the local Radio Shack. His goofing around on the job is almost sad; he’s obviously bored and itching to hold a camera, but he can’t, not yet, and it’s clear he thinks Thr33 Days Dead might be his ticket out of the Shack and into Hollywood. The makeup is surprisingly amazing for an amateur production, and the crew’s invasion of local grocery stores in rotten flesh in order to recruit more extras is amusing.
It’s unfortunate that Town of the Living Dead doesn’t dig too deep into these folks’ personal lives and examine their real, underlying motivations for making this film — surely, after six years, it goes far beyond “zombies are cool” — nor does it provide answers to basic questions (where is the money coming from, and how did this crew hone their skills?). It could also benefit by further expanding on the way this six-year production is affecting the town and why the town is so frustrated with its continued existence. But the screw-ups, the twangy Southern soundbites, and the explosions are far more laughable and entertaining and well suited to what Syfy is going for: a silly unscripted comedy with a zombie peg.
Still, ultimately, what makes Town of the Living Dead such a surprisingly fun watch is the crew’s perseverance and dedication. If they were only in it for fame or money, they would’ve stopped years ago. It’s a pure passion project, and the crew is wholly committed to creating something they think is good and can be proud of. And not even Syfy can say that.