Dawn Of The Dead (1978) * Favorite Movie *


"I'll take Door Number Three! AAAArrrrggghhhh"

Genre: Apocalyptic Action Drama Zombie Horror (USA, Italy)

Starring: Ken Foree (The DentistZone Of The Dead), Scott H. Reiniger (KnightridersDawn of the Dead (2004))

Directed By: George A. Romero (Night Of The Living Dead Land Of The Dead)

Overview: Three weeks into the Zombie Epidemic, four people take off in a helicopter in hopes of finding safety. When they stop at a shopping mall to stock up, they realize that this may just be the good thing they've been looking for.

With a body count of 82 onscreen kills, most of Dawn Of The Dead is about survival: killing, dying and shooting the undead, shooting it in the head. Romero most certainly does not disappoint in this department and because of this, the visual spectacle of Dawn of the Dead is rich with squibs and zombie hoards being culled, though never thinning out.

Many moons ago, I realized that Dawn Of The Dead was my favourite horror movie even though it's not that scary. It's not a broody, suspense-filled, terror-rich film. Though the script is quite utilitarian, filled with the expected instructions and outcries that come from intense survival plots, Dawn of the Dead has enough drama to keep it out of the fluff zone, and I may even dare to go as far as to say poignant.

Fran: What are they doing? Why do they come here?
Stephen: Some kind of instinct, memory… of what they used to do. This was an important place in their lives.

Where Night of the Living Dead has been called a metaphor for fear of 'loss of identity through alienation', and 'an illustration of societal breakdown', there is no doubt that Dawn of The Dead is a spoken-out-loud metaphor for anti-consumerism, and a subtext worthy of appreciation.

Peter: They're after the place. They don't know why, they just remember. Remember that they want to be in here. They're us that's all.

In fact what makes Dawn Of The Dead so genuine is how realistic and down to earth it tends to be most of the time. The latex gore factor is without a doubt shameless fun, but there's something disturbing about this sudden-onset apocalyptic world. Living in a new paradigm where every man, woman and child lives with this immediate and unexplainable war-torn existence of constant fear of attack, not to mention the daily truth that is death. Death doesn't rest in peace. Deceased loved ones become hungry for flesh without predjudice, save how close their victims are. Death walks around, death eats the living, and death's bite is 100% lethal, turning you into one of them. And the more there are of you, the more of them there will be, if I may paraphrase a legless priest's truthful words: "You are stronger than us but soon, I think, they be stronger than you."

Shit.  That's fucking scary.

"When there's no more room in Hell, the dead will walk the Earth... or crawl... or shamble... or whatever"

Overall Rating: 82% (Rise Up!)

Add to this experience the unique music of Goblin which makes up almost the entirely of the soundtrack, and you have in Dawn of The Dead a film that has proven it's timelessness, and has, most certainly earned its place as a Movie You Must See Before You Become A Zombie.

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