Verdict: .5 / 5
I am very protective of the zombie genre – I love these films and they often have potential for relevant commentary, as Shaun of the Dead showed so brilliantly, while simultaneously subverting the genre by turning it into a comedy. George A. Romero has, of course, also used this genre to great effect; so it is particularly annoying when it is done this poorly.
World of the Dead: The Zombie Diaries 2 is shot in a documentary-style as a soldier uses his camera to follow the travails of a world ripped apart by a zombie plague. The style becomes tiresome after five minutes and the decision to film it as such is utterly perplexing. If they had approached it as a comedy it may have worked out quite brilliantly but (see above) the subversion of the genre has been done and woe betide anyone who tries it again and fails.
The title is indicative that this is a sequel and there are references to the first film. The follow-up does not stand well on its own. Nothing much happens besides a futile fight for survival and the characters (if you can call them that) are not annoying, but you are not particularly perturbed about them being offed either. The soldiers are all former civilians and there is one scene where they discuss who they were and what they did before the plague occurred in an attempt to build character (only about three-quarters into the film, however) and it is annoyingly redolent of a similar scene in Saving Private Ryan.
Then of course there are the improbable matters such as the reporter becoming randomly dexterous at handling a gun and the unnecessary scenes of a group of rogues who take advantage of the dire situation the world is in order to rape, rob and murder. These guys are probably more likely to be the ones to pick up a camera first and start filming, which could have led to a different approach. The film tries to attempt several heavy, post-apocalyptic musings as to how humanity handles crisis, but it never follows through with any of them and it ends up as nothing more than a few zombies in the dark and several confused-looking solders.