Zombie Strippers is a 2008 comedy horror film, written and directed by Jay Lee, starring Robert Englund, Jenna Jameson, and Tito Ortiz and distributed by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. It is based on the French existential Theatre of the Absurd play Rhinoceros by Eugene Ionesco.
The film opens with a news montage explaining that it is set in the near future where the Bush administration has been elected to a fourth term, shut down the United States Congress, instituted a ban on public nudity, and is embroiled in a war with France, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Canada, and an independent Alaska. To support the war effort, a secret laboratory run by Dr. Chushfeld (Brad Milne) in Sartre, Nebraska has developed a virus to re-animate dead marines and send them back into battle. However, the virus has broken containment and infected test subjects and scientists are at risk of escaping the lab. A team of marines codenamed the "Z" Squad is sent in to destroy the zombies, but one of the marines named Byrdflough (Zak Kilberg) is bitten and escapes. The infected marine ends up in an alley outside an underground strip club named Rhino. The marine dies and awakens as a zombie that goes into the club.
Rhino is run by Ian Essko (Robert Englund). A new stripper named Jessy (Jennifer Holland) has arrived at the club to save up enough money for her grandmother's operation. She is introduced to the club's star dancer, an intellectual stripper named Kat (Jenna Jameson). Kat begins her dance on the stage, but is attacked by Byrdflough, who ends up biting and infecting her. Essko is concerned about losing his best dancer, so he lets her go back on stage as a zombie. To everyone's surprise, Kat is a better and more popular dancer as a zombie than she was as a human.
The other strippers now find themselves faced with the prospect of losing their customers, since the men now prefer zombie strippers instead of human strippers. One by one, the human strippers become zombies, some by choice in order to compete or (in the case of a Goth stripper Lillith played by Roxy Saint) for fun. During private dances, the zombie strippers bite and kill their customers. Essko tries to keep the zombies hidden in a cage in the club's cellar, but eventually, the zombies escape and overrun the club. The strippers fight each other for supremacy, which includes a moment where Kat shoots ping-pong and billiard balls out of her vagina at her opponent.
The remaining humans in the club struggle to survive until the "Z" Squad burst in to destroy the zombies. But they discover that the zombies were allowed to escape by the Bush administration, who hoped that the ensuing zombie plague would distract the population from the war and the economy.
- Penny Drake and Jenna Jameson on the set
- Jenna Jameson - Kat
- Robert Englund - Ian
- Roxy Saint - Lillith
- Penny Drake - Sox
- Joey Medina - Paco
- Whitney Anderson - Gaia
- Jennifer Holland - Jessy
- Shamron Moore - Jeannie
- Jeannette Sousa - Berengé
- Carmit Levité - Madame Blavatski
- John Hawkes - Davis
- Brad Milne - Dr. Chushfeld
- Zak Kilberg - Byrdflough
- Jen Alex Gonzalez - Lt. Ryker
Region Date Format United Kingdom 13 October 2008 DVD USA 27 October 2008 DVD
The film has received mixed reviews from critics who have criticised its poor execution while recognising its intentionally camp style. As of August 20, 2008, the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported that 41% of critics gave the film positive reviews, based on 51 reviews. Metacritic reported the film had an average score of 45 out of 100, based on 14 reviews.
Of the film, Richard Roeper of Ebert & Roeper stated, "It looks terrible. It doesn't work as camp. It doesn't work as low budget crap", while Dennis Harvey of Variety Magazine called it a "one-joke pic". In contrast, Michael Rechtshaffen of the Hollywood Reporter, thought that there was something "perversely effecting" about the film, despite its "lame political satire".