If you like the movie “Zombieland” or the hit TV show “The Walking Dead,” you would love the western and zombie combination of “Revelation Trail,” a film by alumnus John Gibson.
With the help of Murray State students and professors, the film was locally produced and created.
This film features a Christian family trying to get by in a small, western town and the sheriff is trying to keep everything orderly.
The film starts off a little bit freaky and unexpected. James, the son of Isabel and the Preacher is suddenly attacked and bitten by a wandering zombie.
The Preacher then searches for help, while Isabel, his wife, stays behind. When the Preacher reaches the doctor, they both realize there is more than one zombie in the quiet town. He then grabs his gun and shoots more of the unexpected undead.
The Preacher goes straight to the sheriff’s office where there are dozens of zombies killing citizens left and right. He gets on his horse and heads westward.
It is then the Preacher and sheriff’s job to find and kill any zombie in sight. Toward the end, both realize any who are bitten by the zombies become a part of the zombie army.
Time passed, seasons changed and the zombies kept rising from the ground. Shots were fired, bombs were set off and the preacher and sheriff moved on like nothing had happened.
This was a surprise to the audience from the Preacher because of his faith and his occupation as a preacher. They both believed “you got to do, what you got to do.”
Many students helped out by working backstage or being an extra on set.
“I thought it was really cool what they did with it,” said Alex Carney, freshman from Paris, Tenn. “I was an extra zombie in the film and the makeup was messy, but a lot of fun. I went to Murray High School and heard the announcements one day that John was creating a movie and signed up. I got some of my friends to sign up, also, and we did it together.”
Gibson, the creator and a graduate from Murray State, had called Robert Valentine, a friend of his and a current professor at Murray State to help on set.
“It was a very exciting experience and a great crew to work with,” Valentine, professor in the department of journalism and mass communications, said. “The great thing about John was he asked us what we thought about each scene and we had a chance to put our opinions in each character or scene we did.”
The staff and crew put a lot of thought and planning into the film before they started shooting.
“I am fascinated by the audience’s reaction, that they are reminded by ‘The Walking Dead’ or ‘Zombieland’ and I think that’s awesome,” Gibson said.
The movie took approximately three and a half weeks to produce and more than $13,000 in donations to start shooting, Gibson said.
“We have gone all around Kentucky to premiere the movie and have gotten many positive responses out of it,” he said. “Overall, it has been the best experience of my life.”
“Revelation Trail” was recently named an official selection in the 2013 Rivers Edge International Film Festival in Paducah, Ky.
Story by Mckenzie Willett, Staff Writer