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|Index||197 reviews in total|
'Land of the Dead', 'Diary of the Dead', 'Dawn of the Dead', and 'Planet Terror' are my favorite zombie movies so far.What they did so well was create an atmospehere that helped make interesting characters, a good plot, and a really good movie.This remake of George A. Romero's version probably should've have just stayed beneath the ground.It's not that I didn't like it, it's just that I wish the people didn't stay in the house for an hour and a half.Zombie movies need to take the people and put them in different areas.The only zombie movie that put the characters in one place and let them stay that I liked was 'Quarantine'. This is a bad zombie movie, but it's a so-so movie overall.
I do not fault Romero for the way the original looked, but you can tell it had a really low budget and it looks kind of choppy in places. This film makes up for that and has a nice look to it, just a shame it is not nearly as gory as other zombie films like "Dawn of the Dead" and "Day of the Dead" or even lesser known Italian zombie films of the late 70's and early 80's. The story is sort of the same, with just enough differences to keep it interesting and not look like a carbon copy remake where it is the old virtual shot by shot deal. So we get the zombies attacking and survivors trying to hold up in a house in the middle of nowhere. We have are arguing that ensues about where the best place to hide is and we have the poor sick child that has been bitten by one of the undead outside and of course we have the speculation about what those outside are as well. Differences are plenty though as the attack scenes on the house seem faster than the original and the lead female is not some very spaced out girl who lacks any and all survival skills. Also, the ending is very different and more to my liking than the original as well. The highlight in the movie though has to be the little girl scene as that looks creepy and is very good in this version of the film.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
In rural Pennsylvania, a group of average people gather together in a
farmhouse to fight off the undead hordes taking over the area.
Night of the Living Dead (1968) is my favourite film of all time. I've had the 1990 remake for a long time, but have only watched it once. The first time I saw it, I remembered nothing but mediocrity, and shortly thereafter became embittered that they attempted to mess with the film at all. Then, I saw Night of the Living Dead 3-D and I got a little more respect for the 1990 remake, seeing as it's not one of the worst horror films of all time (and NotLD3D is). So, I decided to revisit it. This first remake is not a bad film. But it's just not very good either. I think the majority of my dislike for it comes from its very 'TV-movie feel': From the direction/cinematography, the acting, and even the credits. . . it just feels like some kind of gory Hallmark Showcase or something. The gore & makeup are well done, even though Tom Savini didn't do them. Overall, as a remake, it's hard to consider overly excellent as it's essentially a subpar clone of the perfect original. On its own, however, it's a good zombie flick that should be watched as a separate piece to be enjoyed. Unfortunately, due to its lack of straying from the original, it's hard to view as special.
Final verdict: 6/10.
"Night of the Living Dead" immediately lapsed into the public domain
because the original theatrical distributor, the Walter Reade
Organization, didn't place a copyright notice on the prints. In 1968,
United States copyright law required notice for a work to maintain a
copyright. Image Ten had a proper notice on the title frames beneath
the original title, "Night of the Flesh Eaters." The distributor
inadvertently removed the copyright statement when it changed the
title, an act of negligence which ensured widespread distribution, but
without royalties to the film makers.
Romero wanted to get at least some restitution for himself and others who worked on the original.
If you ask me - I don't believe that George Romero could've taken more
than, say, 2 minutes to write the screenplay for this atrociously
awful, scene-for-scene, remake of his original, 1968 version of "The
And, with that said, I think that little, giggling George so rightly deserves a good, swift kick in the ass for his unwelcome involvement in this utterly dead-end production.
With this entire dumb-ass film being completely inferior and anti-climatic to the original (in every way imaginable), the one word that I think sums up 1990's "The Living Dead", in a nutshell, would be the word "embarrassment" - 'Cause, believe me, that's all that it was from start to finish. (And, nope, I'm sorry, but more graphic gore didn't make this film better)
And, finally - While the original, 1968 "Living Dead" was made on a $114,000 budget, this remake cost $4.2 million in all. That rounds off to this remake costing about 37x more than what the original did and yet its total mediocrity (on all levels) rendered it as being nothing but a putrid heap of horror-movie excrement, in the long run.
Tom Savini should be banned, outright, from ever directing movies, regardless of their genre. He clearly doesn't know what the hell he's doing.
It is fair to say that, in zombie movie terms, the original 'Night of
the Living Dead' was a classic. Not only was it pretty gory and creepy
for its time (hey, it was still the sixties!), but it also carefully
alluded to the racial tensions of America at the time. Therefore, it
not only cemented its place in the horror hall of fame, but also won
praise for its daring social commentary.
How could anyone truly do the original justice by remaking it? Well... perhaps one thing that may go a long way is by giving it back to the people who made it to begin with! Yes, zombie overlord George A Romero returns at (well, near) the helm to make sure the remake goes smoothly. If you don't know... the film is about the start of a worldwide zombie epidemic. While society crumbles a rag-tag bunch of people try to survive the night in an abandoned farm house, while trying to fend off seemingly never ending waves of flesh-eating ghouls. Now, that synopsis actually describes both the 1968 version and the 1990 remake. The latter's first selling point is that it sticks to the original concept pretty tightly. In fact, the story is basically a shot-for-shot remake (okay, not 'shot-for-shot' in that depressing 'Psycho' remake, but shot-for-shot enough to keep the basic premise constantly the same).
Yes, it has some changes. First of all the remake looks better. It has a higher budget and has a more 'polished' feel to it. Plus all the actors really do play their parts well (some even being improved, in a few cases). Basically, the original is so good, that a remake that simply takes everything that's good at it and just updates its look and feel for a more modern audience isn't such a bad thing.
Yes, the original was a classic, simply because it was for want of a better word original. There had never really been anything like it before, therefore it's stayed the test of time. Yes, it was filmed in black and white (and the 'coloured in' version looked a little odd) so having what is technically a 'properly coloured' version of the same movie is no bad thing.
If you were to ask most (a) zombie purists and (b) film critics, they'd probably tell you that nothing could outdo the 1968 version. And, to be fair, they may be right. However, that doesn't stop the 1990 remake being a decent enough little zombie film in its own right. If you like your undead slow, creepy and relentless, give this one a go.
This movie is a classic zombie horror, it's great and there are a lot
of thrills throughout.
If I have to knock it at all, the acting could be a bit better. There are no big names in this movie but for what it is, being a fun zombie movie, it is good enough.
Also I would say that the movie is a little bit too much like a copy of the original grandfather of all zombie movies "Night of the Living Dead". It can't possibly be better than that so if you want to remake the movie at least make it different, add more twists or different settings etc.
At the end of the day this is a fantastic movie that you can still enjoy today, some great cheesy special effects and gore, and lots of fun zombie deaths!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Tom Savini didn't need to remake this movie, but I don't think anyone's
complaining. First of all, we have full Savini zombie effects, in
color. And despite what critics think, it's awesome to look at.
Secondly, just listen to this cast. Tony Todd (Candyman) is Ben this
time around. Tom Towles, who played Otis in "Henry: Portrait of a
Serial Killer" plays Tom. Bill Mosely (Choptop from Texas Chainsaw
Massacre II) is in the movie early as the ill fated Johnnie. And to top
it off, the only man to be killed by Jason Voorhees, Leatherface, and
zombies, veteran Bill Butler plays Tom, complete with a Pittsburgh
So is the story different? No. Not really. Everyone ends up in an abandoned farmhouse again. This time, Barbara is much stronger, and far less catatonic, thanks to great work from Patricia Tallman. The same basic chain of events happen. Ben and Barbara bar up the doors in the house, then a group of people in the basement come out and introduce themselves. Harry and Ben bicker about whether or not to go to the basement. Once again, they decide to take a truck out, which needs gas, which Tom goes to get and of course, blows himself up.
This time however, Harry and Ben start shooting at each other. Ben goes downstairs after being hit and Harry goes to the attic. So, Barbara just decides to leave. She goes outside and teams up with those trusty Western PA gun slinging rednecks in different kinds of zombie killing games, including hanging the zombies and throwing rocks at them, as well as randomly shooting them. Hoo-ray. As far as social commentary goes, this scene pretty much has the most, as Barbara mutters, "They're us. We're them and they're us." But the movie really isn't too preachy. It's a gory fun mess.
So she goes back to the house safely, as the zombies are either too slow or just plain outnumbered. Inside she finds Ben, who is now a zombie. But what's even better is finding Harry alive, not a zombie. Does she help him? No. She shoots him. Good for her, because that guy, I have to say, was a real prick.
So that's the remake. Was it necessary? Not at all. But it was a blast to watch. And really, it didn't take anything away from the original, in the way that the "Dawn of the Dead" remake would tarnish the original years later.
__________________________________ For all of the Horror Banana's reviews, visit http://morozov924.hubpages.com/
Although this 1990 remake of the scariest film I have ever seen is not anywhere near as scary as the 1968 original, it is still a very good film and has improved with age and repeated viewings. I first saw the original NOLD upon the initial 1968 release at a drive-in, again in 1970 at a drive-in and then not again until around 1980 on VHS video. In the interim I was lucky enough to find and buy the original paperback edition of the 1974 Warner Books novelization. In the remake, Tom Savini does a fine job with the director's chair and the film benefits hugely from two very strong performances from Tony Todd and Patricia Tallman. The make-up effects, on-location filming and music are also all first-rate. It is a very worthwhile film despite being a remake of a true classic. It does not attempt to be equal to or better than the original. It doesn't copy the original scene-for-scene and dialog-for-dialog. Although the plots are indeed very similar, the remake offers some very unexpected twists and enhances some characters while it somewhat changes others. And for those who have seen the original film but not the remake, steer clear of reading spoilers for the remake's ending. It was a touch of pure genius and won't be at all what you will be expecting. See the remake but don't compare it to the original classic. It stands very well on its own merits and even compliments and pays homage and tribute to the 1968 version.
I like zombie movies in general and so was curious to see a remake of
the seminal film that ignited the genre. I can't compare to the
original material as I haven't seen it, but I thought that by itself,
the remake was still a very good film. I thought there was intensity,
surprises and disturbing moments, and not because of the relatively
little amount of gore. I think Tony Todd (the only "living" Black actor
here) offered a strong tormented performance that made his character's
plight more poignant. He's a severely underestimated actor in my eyes.
Patricia Tallman, the redhead, had a fascinating character story arc
and she pulled it off in a competent yet not outstanding fashion. Tom
Towles in a great performance as Cooper played a selfish man you really
loved to hate. Whenever he was interacting with the others, especially
Todd, there were lots of psychological tension that made the pressure
The "action" scenes involving the zombies were not particularly dynamic or gruesome (perhaps it's because I'm desensitized from having watched too many horror flicks ;-), but such was not the point. I sometimes found the zombies pitiful and pathetic, and I thought they moved very well, "in-character" so to speak, all compliments. The intentionally grotesque zombies with minimal make-up effects were not the stars or the main menace here, it was more about survivors in extreme conditions and especially human nature. In that regard, the ending was not only morally powerful and satisfying, I found it pretty memorable. Night of the Living Dead has a limited scope (mostly in an isolated house) and non-spectacular zombies, but it still packs a bite and is definitely worth watching for the psychological thriller/horror fan. I think it shows that the original creator, Romero, was actively involved in the production.
Rating: 7.5 out of 10 (Very good)
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