Saturday Special: Zilla and Zoe [Film]


“In the story, Zoe is determined to make a horror film. She sets her sights on an upcoming horror film contest and enlists her family, to help her with the project. As her film becomes more and more bloody, her father Oscar (Conroyd), becomes concerned and shuts down production. Now, Zoe is tasked with shooting her sister’s wedding. But, she still has plans to complete her horror film and this wedding might be the bloodiest set ever!” – Allen Film Publicity




Jessica Scalise’s very funny, but also very touching, film Zilla and Zoe is at its core, a delightful treat of a film. It touches on several different elements of the human personality in a sort of serious manner, yet manages to keep the whole idea of the story very light-hearted, and dare I say just a whole lotta fun. The story is solid and follows a group of truly unique characters. One of those characters I should add, is not actually a person. It’s a particular city that is whimsical in its own right. Of course I am talking about our beloved city of roses, Portland Oregon. Regular readers know that we tout this city with great pride and admiration for what it is at its core. Unfortunately, one thing that it is at its core, and so many PDX natives refuse to admit, is that the city can be completely ripe for mockery. And Zilla and Zoe is not afraid to poke a little fun at its fare city. Scenes fit themselves into the storyline as though they were taken directly from Portlandia. The character Oscar (brilliantly portrayed by Kurt Conroyd) even passes along the old saying of “Unemployment in Portland is more like an art form”. I haven’t lived near my old stomping grounds in quite a while, so I’m not sure how much gentrification has changed much. But, I can tell you that this statement used to be very accurate. The use of Portland, while not entirely important, definitely adds a bit more hilarity that fits in beautiful with the story.



When it comes to the cast of Zilla and Zoe, the two titular characters were wonderful, although weirdly not as much of a “team” as the title may suggest. But youngster Aida Valentine gives an amazing performance as the horror movie obsessed Zoe, and Sam Kamerman is a damn saint on the screener who should be in the running for the crown jewel of the PDX film community. But, as wonderful as they both were, I have to say that Kurt Conroyd absolutely stole the show. His performance was phenomenal, and brought the perfect amount of life to what I would consider to be Scalise’s best written character in the film as the uncle who’s just sort of passing through the entire situation at hand, yet sort of feels like he might be on the edge of a nervous breakdown. A performance like Conroyd’s is something that makes me so happy that Al Gore invented the internet, so I can write this and tell you all about how wonderful he was in this brilliant film.


So, if you are looking for a good bit of fun in a film, I cannot recommend Zilla and Zoe enough. You’re going to laugh, you’re going to smile. You’re going to see a 10 year old girl mutilate dolls in the first two minutes. Honestly, what more could you ask for? Enjoy!


Zilla and Zoe will is currently available in select theaters, and will be released in VOD soon.


<p><a href=”″>Zilla and Zoe Trailer</a> from <a href=””>Indican Pictures</a> on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

About rontrembathiii
write. write. write.

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