Posted in Regular Feature, The Movies, The Pink Panther Snipes Again

Aquarium of the Dead review

This week we’re not strictly limited to sharks and – after the disappointment of the last few picks, which didn’t coin in on the gore or the action nearly enough – this isn’t a bad thing. In fact, this neo-classic (dare I suggest?) positively saturates (lol) the screen with re-animated marine life, large and small – and it is glorious.

Special shout out ahead of time to the sublime stylings of one Vivica A. Fox (codename: Copperhead) who is undoubtedly too good for this vehicle, yet gives it everything she’s got.

Aquarium of the Dead (2021)

Don’t touch the glass

A scientific accident causes sea creatures in an aquarium to become zombies.

Genre: Horror, Action, Comedy ∙ IMDB user rating: 2.9
My score: 2.5/5 ∙ Runtime: 86 mins

*Spoilers but it won’t matter*

Shit royally hits the fan at an aquarium, when a seemingly undead octopus kills two keepers and leaves a third battered but alive. Dr. Karen James (Madeleine Falk) is able to stumble through the thankfully quite empty aquarium space to ring the alarm. Meanwhile, other staff members – Dan and Skylar (D.C. Douglas and Robert Contrado) – encounter some seriously bad-tempered otters.

Yes, seriously.

UPDATE: Skylar is in fact a private visitor and not as I’ve suggested just another member of staff. Sucks to be him on this particular day then.

Meanwhile, aquarium owner/boss bitch Miranda Riley (Eva Ceja) is schmoozing local senator Bailey Blackburn (Anthony Jensen) for desperately needed funding to keep the whole operation afloat. Unfortunately, Bailey is unsympathetic to Miranda’s pitch, almost as though he has a different agenda on his mind…

On hand to provide probably the only sensible viewpoint is security detail (?) Clu (Fox) who quickly acts on Karen’s report and demands a swift lockdown. Skylar and Dan fight some spider crabs (which frankly don’t need to be re-animated to be the freakiest creatures ever to have walked the earth) but soon join the rest of the team.

Now locked inside the facility, Miranda, Karen, the Senator and his assistant Beth (Erica Duke) – plus Dan and Skylar – are forced to battle through each exhibit to a place they can make a call and hopefully get the help they need. I think – honestly, I’m already hazy on a lot of the details.

With the virtual help of Clu, who’s connected with Miranda via CB radio and watching the action as it unfolds on the security cameras, this rag tag bunch deal with undead starfish, Mako sharks, a crocodile, an adorable walrus and finally Patient Zero, the octopus, who conveniently oozes a clear ectoplasm allowing us to track when he might be just around the corner.

“Deep fried calamari – my favourite!” ~ Eddie ‘Clu’ Cluwirth

With all this shit going on it seems ridiculous that one of the party would still be keeping a secret about how and why this disaster has happened in the first place – but Miranda is firmly on his case, like a zombie starfish on a hysterical doctor’s ass if you will.

Will she live to serve justice? And, more importantly, what the fuck was Viv thinking agreeing to this role?


Aquarium is the third (third) film in the Zoombies saga yet I didn’t need prior education to follow along. It helped that I was just enjoying the deaths and not focusing on the nuances.

Aquarium isn’t a good film by any stretch but it is pleasingly crackers, more or less female driven and packed to the rafters with CGI beasts. The shark appearances are minimal but the Makos are part of possibly my favourite scene so I can forgive that (Why the FUCK didn’t they sneak behind them?).

Vivacia obviously stands out as the only proper actress but the woman playing Miranda isn’t horrific, while Dr Karen is hands down my favourite character. With her confusing and inconsistent accent, hysterical demeanor and dedication to butchering long medical terms, she truly steals every scene.

Otherwise, the SFX doesn’t suck but not very much effort has been put into making the creatures look like actual zombies. If they’d committed to more practical effects, this could’ve been quite something. And, finally, of all the ways to go here, I’m quite sure I’d be taken down by a disgruntled starfish which would just be embarrassing.




40-something shark movie enthusiast and horror fan.

4 thoughts on “Aquarium of the Dead review

  1. Omg, I’m so glad we both massively appreciated Dr. Karen James and her overcommitment to such a silly film. I could so easily watch a Dr. James vs. starfish spin-off.
    Lol, the shark scene made zero sense. My biggest complaint is that we had to watch every single person go past, and most of the characters I gave zero fucks about. I also don’t completely understand why it was so important not to touch the sharks but making very obvious, loud sounds was totally fine?!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When Dr. Karen started violently shaking her limbs on front of them I could’ve died. What a woman. A lot of it was fairly boring in fairness but the beasts were great. Good choice darling. I will be exploring the first two in the trilogy – maybe for the blog at some point? x

      Liked by 1 person

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