Following an ever-growing epidemic of zombies that have risen from the dead, two Philadelphia S.W.A.T. team members, a traffic reporter, and his television executive girlfriend seek refuge in a secluded shopping mall.
Barbra and her brother Johnny travel by car from Pittsburgh to the countryside to visit the gravestone of their father in the cemetery. Out of the blue, they are attacked by a strange man and Johnny is murdered. Barbra runs and releases the brake of Johnny's car since the keys are in his pocket, and flees to an isolated farmhouse, where she locks herself inside. Barbra is in shock and soon she finds a man, Ben, who is also escaping from the inhuman creatures and he reinforces the doors, windows and openings in the house. He also finds a shotgun and a radio and they learn that the radiation from a satellite that was returning from Venus has somehow reactivated the brain of the dead. Then they find five humans hidden in the basement: Harry Cooper, his wife Helen and their daughter Karen that is sick; and Tom and his girlfriend Judy. Harry has an argument with Ben, since he believes that the basement is the safest place for them and Harry does not agree. Along the night, the tension ... Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Columbia Pictures was the only major Hollywood studio interested in distributing this film, but eventually passed because it was in black-and-white at a time when movies had to compete with new color televisions. Columbia did distribute the 1990 color remake Night of the Living Dead (1990). American International Pictures (AIP) considered releasing the film, but wanted George A. Romero to shoot an upbeat ending and add more of a love story subplot. See more »
Ben finds a pair of shoes and puts them on Barbara's feet, but in the very next shot where she's sitting on the couch, she is not wearing shoes nor are they any in the shot with her. See more »
There is no on-screen copyright notice, nor any of the usual legal disclaimers typically found in movie credits; this is the main reason the film has been in the public domain since its release. See more »
The film that redefined the horror genre overnight
The Shining, The Exorcist and The Omen are all films that owe some of their stylistic approach to this film. This is the film that re-wrote the rules of the horror genre as it went along, whilst acting as both social critique and fond homage to 'The Birds' as well.
Romero set in place a steady breakdown of all our assumptions of the horror film, which he then utilised to full effect through the rest of this film and the two superb sequels that followed.
This is perhaps one of the greatest low budget cult movies ever made, certainly one of the most influential, and in its brutally harrowing documentary style conclusion a harsh statement on American racial attitudes. A statement which is as relevant today as it was over thirty years ago.
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