Total Pageviews

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Dawn of the Dead

     "Dawn of the Dead" is George A. Romero's 1979 follow-up to his classic "Night of the Living Dead".  Basically the same scenario as the previous, the action has moved from the Pennsylvania countryside as the undead have taken over the land and spread to immense numbers.   Bleak and unapologetic, "Dawn" instantly became a worldwide sensation and horror classic.  Romero's scathing attacks on mass consumer capitalism have been discussed ad nauseum, but satire aside, "Dawn of the Dead" is essentially a kick-ass monster movie.

      The movie opens with an apocalyptic tone, and fifteen minutes into the movie you already know that this probably won't be having a happy ending.  While a worldwide zombie apocalypse approaches, the films opens in Philadelphia as the city is besieged by the walking dead.  The National Guard has been called in, but there really doesn't seem to be much hope.  Soon our four desperate survivors- two military men, a helicopter pilot and a TV reporter, barricade themselves inside a shopping mall, slowly and inevitably attracting hordes of zombies, and gives Romero plenty of satire to work with.  You see, the zombies submerge on the mall, because one it was an important place to them... Get it?

      Once again filmed almost "documentary style", "Dawn Of the Dead" also manages to come across as almost cartoonish at times.  Tom Savini's shocking effects are devastatingly brutal, and this still may be the goriest mainstream film to ever be released in the United States. So much gore, in fact, that it almost becomes monotonous at times.  And oddly, most of the violence in this movie is directed at the zombies, not caused by them. Far more intelligent than it's given credit for, this movie is sometimes unfairly known as just a mindless gore-fest, but it's actually far more than that.  Romero is one smart dude- this is much more than just a bunch of  blood and guts. Sometimes horrific, sometimes absurd- "Dawn Of the Dead" is a truly shocking and influential horror film.  A slew of zombie knockoffs followed- some pretty good, most terrible.  Go with the Anchor Bay Special Edition DVD of "Dawn of the Dead"- the transfer makes the movie look as if it were filmed yesterday.  You gotta love Anchor Bay!

No comments:

I in no way claim ownership of any image or video used on this blog.