7.3/10
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1,065 user 289 critic

Dawn of the Dead (2004)

A nurse, a policeman, a young married couple, a salesman, and other survivors of a worldwide plague that is producing aggressive, flesh-eating zombies, take refuge in a mega Midwestern shopping mall.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Ana
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CJ
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Michael Barry ...
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R.D. Reid ...
Kim Poirier ...
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Storyline

Ana goes home to her peaceful suburban residence, but she is unpleasantly surprised the morning that follows when her husband is brutally attacked by her zombified neighbor. In the chaos of her once picturesque neighborhood, Ana flees and stumbles upon a police officer named Kenneth, along with more survivors who decide that their best chances of survival would be found in the deserted Crossroads Shopping Mall. When supplies begin running low and other trapped survivors need help, the group comes to the realization that they cannot stay put forever at the Shopping Mall, and devise a plan to escape. Written by Will

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

36 billion people have died since the reign of humanity. For the new Dawn, there's a reunion... See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for pervasive strong horror violence and gore, language and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

| | |

Language:

Release Date:

19 March 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Zack Snyder's Dawn of the Dead  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$26,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$26,722,575 (USA) (19 March 2004)

Gross:

$58,885,635 (USA) (28 May 2004)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (unrated director's cut)

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As many as 50 make-up artists would be working on transforming actors into zombies for the days that required crowd scenes. See more »

Goofs

When Luis hits the windshield on Ana's car, the pattern of cracks indicates that it's not made of safety glass, a government-mandated standard for all car windows since the 1980s. See more »

Quotes

Bart: Look, he's a twitcher.
[C.J. and Terry watch the twitching zombified security guard]
Bart: TV says you gotta shoot them in the head.
Terry: TV said a lot of things that aren't true.
CJ: Well, fuck the fucker. I told him not go to downstairs.
[C.J. shoots the zombified security guard in head]
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the closing credits we see a series of shots filmed by the survivors using a camcorder they find on Steve's boat. There are a couple of scenes of Steve and his girlfriend (still left on the camera), then the survivors finding a small boat with a still-animated zombie head in an icebox, and finally them running out of gas and landing on an island where they are attacked by zombies. There are then a series of brief almost-subliminal flashes of zombies "attacking" the camera. See more »

Connections

Featured in Top 10 Lost Horror Films (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

The Hangman's Song
Written by Tim Kelley & Christa Meyer
Performed by Tyler Bates, Joey Waronker, Rusty Logsdon, Nan Vernon & Soda
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Why I gave Dawn a 10 (well, maybe it should have been a9).

I've been to thousands of movies in my lifetime and own hundreds of videos and DVDs, so I am a fan but not a bona fide film critic. This is my first online review.

My wife and I saw the original Dawn of the Dead 25 years ago at a midnight show and left wired enough to talk each other down till the morning. Perhaps a quarter of a century has inured us to the violence a bit since we just watched it again (rental video) last week prior to yesterday's venture to the local multiplex to see the remake/"reimagining" and were mostly unperturbed by the revisit.

For some reason, I was hooked on the new Dawn months ago from the teaser and, subsequently, the actual trailer. The Sparklehorse song in the former fit perfectly and the suburban shot followed by killer Vivian and closing with the burned projector film of the latter was intriguing in its own way. So I was primed to see the movie, usually a recipe for disaster since preview expectations are rarely fulfilled by the finished product. This time, however, they were.

The cast was uniformly believable and, more important, empathizable (at least with the good guys who got sorted out along the way). Even the playboy jerk had several relevant lines. Polley was a good, strong female lead (with another great rebuttal -- "No, I'm a * nurse" to a query about her medical skills) and Rhames a cheerable, if reluctant, hero. The camaraderie, such as it was, worked, and visceral me-first survival gave way more often to self-sacrifice.

So, what's not to like? The fundamental premise that a classic got remade? Doesn't wash. These are two different movies with the same name and similar premises but very different attitudes. (Better special effects didn't hurt, either, although this new version was oddly less disturbing sans zombies munching on dismembered body parts.) Speedy zombies (except for the "twitchers")? No problem; hey, they're hungry and, as always, persistent. My attention was held for the better part of two hours; the story was interesting; the outcome ambivalent; the characters arisen to the task at hand, becoming coldly rational to the divisions between life and death and zombiedom; the music weirdly appropriate; the black humor welcome respite. No, Dawn of the Dead isn't Citizen Kane nor is it a sacrilegious assault on the horror genre. It's solid filmmaking that's entertaining and thought-provoking. Otherwise, I suspect Romero would never have put his imprimatur on the remake.


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