Baltic Event Co-Production Market
Through the story of a global apocalypse and the attempt of a Finnish family to find shelter among the Eastern European highlanders, MONTE ZOMBIE explores what it really means to grow up and become a man in a world of ridiculously inflated machoism.
Zombie outbreak hits the world.
LYDIA is evacuating her teenage sons BUDO and NINO from Finland to Montenegro, the place her husband, who died in the apocalypse, came from.
Upon arrival to a lonely mountain village in Montenegro, they meet the family of the late father. As it happens, they are in a centennial war between their relatives and another family of highlanders and brutes.
Both brothers are forced to join the war, but while Budo is appalled by the brute relatives, Nino seems amused by the machoism and overly interested in all sorts of weapons at his disposal. Their urban worldview is slowly crushed by the violent nature of their highlander cousins.
The zombie virus eventually reaches the village, but instead of killing zombified cousins, both families use them as biological weapons against each other, so the zombies soon start taking over.
The body count rises and the remaining members of both families must unite and make the final push together and fight for their lives.
Teenager Budo lives in Helsinki with his gentle and kind Finnish mother, his loud and crude Montenegrin father and his younger brother Nino. Budo took after his mother: he is a kind and insecure kid, who doesn’t feel that he is ready for all the challenges that the life of a grown-up brings to him. He is too shy with his smart and decisive girlfriend, he doesn’t feel that he can be a match to his macho dad, and even his younger brother is more of a man than he is – both mentally and physically. Life is never easy for an 18-year-old – and especially during a zombie apocalypse. Budo’s dad decides that they will be safer with his relatives in his native Montenegrin mountain village, so he informs his family that they will be leaving Finland. Budo can barely hold tears while he says goodbye to his sweetheart Helena, not knowing if he will ever see her again. The family gets into their car, casting a last look at their home, bound for the unknown - and then Budo’s father dies. They haven’t even left Helsinki yet and all of a sudden, Budo is the head of the family. His brother is too impulsive and his mother too devastated, so he is the only one capable of making rational decisions and leading his family to the safety heaven of Montenegro, where things get even worse. The zombies haven’t reached the lonely village yet but turns out that the Montenegrin relatives are really a gang of brute, gun-loving Eastern European smugglers and petty criminals, who don’t have much understanding of his city ways. Not only that, but they are also in a bitter centennial war with another local family - and they expect Budo and his brother to join the fight. However, Budo’s brother fits in just fine, and it seems that he found his place in the world. He loves firearms, he enjoys bonding with the rest of the crew, and he even finds a bit of forbidden romance with a girl from the rival family. Unexpectedly, even his mother decides that it’s smarter not to make waves and to respect the local customs, urging Budo to do the same, but Budo feels lonelier than ever. When the zombies finally reach the village, the families are in such a hateful fight that they even use zombified relatives as biological weapons against each other. One by one they start dying, more because of their irrational urge for revenge than because of the common enemy. Budo must find a way to save himself and his loved ones, but it soon becomes clear that blunt force and violence are useless in this fight. Zombie genre was always more than just horror. From the beginnings and George Romero’s exploring of capitalism’s core problems to Jim Jarmusch’s intelligent comedy approach, it was always a fertile soil for analysis of the deepest social issues.
As personal identity becomes the most important question of our days, zombie film proves itself once more as a great platform to ask some questions about the current time and society. And combined with comedy, it allows us to tackle the subject even more brutally and honestly. We cannot escape the constraints of society, but how can we survive them? What is the moment when the „ancient“ rules need to change to fit the needs of modern times? Is it possible to stay true to yourself or does it always come with the risk of being isolated and ultimately destroyed?
Monte Zombie will be scary and it will be funny, but not for the usual reasons.
Monte Zombie is an elevated horror with elements of dark comedy, designed for international audiences. It is a predominantly English-speaking film with an international cast with a zombie outline that has a strong niche. The film is intended for wide theatrical release in all co-production countries but is not limited only to them. We have also secured theatrical distribution in countries of ex-Yugoslavia and aim for even wider distribution on TV, home video, online platforms, etc. The main character will be played by Onni Tomilla, who played the leading role of Samuel L. Jackson in the blockbuster Big Game. Like any good zombie film, Monte Zombie uses the genre formula to ask important questions. In our time, the question of identity has become one of the crucial ones. As the apocalypse destroys all rules and regulations, the survivors need to find a new sense of self. This makes Monte Zombie a universal story, a kind of film that communicates well with audiences all over the globe. The action and horror scenes will attract die-hard zombie fans, but humour and social satire will intrigue the more sophisticated moviegoers.
Danilo Bećković is a director, writer, and producer based in Belgrade, Serbia, whose fiction and documentary films have been screened at such festivals as Bucheon IFFF, Cairo IFF, Fantasia Montreal, Sitges, Cottbus, Karlovy Vary, Beldocs, and many other. These titles include blockbusters The Samurai in Autumn (Best Serbian Film at SOFEST 2017) and Little Buddho, both among the top 15 most-watched Serbian films of the decade. Danilo is an EAVE TTB alumni and a professor of film directing at the Belgrade Academy of Arts.
The Little One, 2019, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt9030054/reference/ The Samurai in Autumn, 2016, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5004422/reference/ Little Buddho, 2014, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2496972/reference/
Marko Paljić worked as a head of production and distribution for major Serbian film houses Cobra Film and Blue Pen Production. For the latter he produced TEARS FOR SALE in 2008, one of the biggest Serbian productions in history, co-produced and distributed worldwide (sold to over 30 countries) by Luc Besson's EuropaCorp and premiered at the Toronto FF. Marko was а member of the Board of Film Producers Association Serbia and one of the founders of Film in Serbia (Serbian Film Commission).
Restore Point, 2023, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt9362492/ The Little One, 2019, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt9030054/ The Samurai in Autumn, 2016, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5004422/ Little Buddho, 2014, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2496972/ Charleston and Vendetta, 2008, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0380249/