Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Dawn of the Dead (George A. Romero, 1978) Review

Save zombie films for Halloween? Nah, I'd rather just talk about them when I feel like it...such as now. I have been a fan of the Dead Rising video games for quite a while now and was a bit puzzled by the message on the front that seems to distance Dead Rising from this film. Well, I finally got round to seeing it and thought I'd deliver you this So, was it worth it? Let's find out.

During an on-going zombie apocalypse. four survivors, Stephen (David Emge), Roger (Scott H. Reiniger), Fran (Gaylen Ross) and Peter (Ken Foree), escape from the un-dead via helicopter. Running low on fuel, the group sees an abandoned mall that they can use as a base. Upon finding a way into the mall, Roger and Peter go out into the mall in search of supplies in order to survive and face off against the zombies and anyone else that dares enter their base.

With a zombie film, is was expecting some horrible gory stuff and just horror. This is not. I mentioned in my last review that ParaNorman lacked the horror aspect and focused more on the humour. Arguably, Dawn of the Dead does the same thing (although there are some gory and shocking moments) as it is pretty damn funny. The very idea of some people having a mall all to themselves is great and I'm glad that it focuses on this idea. It leads to some great moments and I can see the comparison to Dead Rising.

The characters go through some excellent development and it's hard to believe that the main actors haven't actually done that much else. They do a good job, especially Reiniger and Foree. The only problem I can really find is that there were some moments that I think were very stupid or just a bit slow. It seems zombie films have a habit of being a bit slow at times. The good outweighs the bad, however, so I guess just sit through the first fifteen minutes and you're good.

Dawn of the Dead is certainly one of the better zombie films I've seen. It's not THAT violent (well...until the last act) and the idea behind the mall setting leads to some great moments. Is it the best zombie film? Nah but it's up there. The great acting, setting, humour and some iconic moments certainly brings this film together as one of the greats within the genre.

Filled with some great acting, humour, an excellent concept which all comes together as a great zombie film.

No, I'm not reviewing the remake next. Shut up.

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