Critic Reviews

89

Metascore

Based on 17 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
100
Slant Magazine
A stark, eerie and unrelenting parable of dread. There’s a brute force in Night of the Living Dead that catches one in the throat.
100
Empire
Part of its strength is that it’s not a glossy, predictable Hollywood horror and so it has a grainy, semi-amateur, black and white look which gives it a dread sense of conviction.
100
Dead is a movie you want to dismiss as another, gross supernatural B-movie: campy fun. But, shot and edited by Romero himself, the film is an astounding technical knockout, often so expressionist that the daylight seems afraid of the dark. The horror is so unalloyed that dead look decidedly, frighteningly human.
100
Time Out London
Whenever it seems there might be a glimmer of hope, Romero cruelly reverses our expectations. The nihilistic ending, in particular, has to be seen to be believed. Chuckle, if you can, during the first few minutes; because after that laughter catches in the throat as the clammy hand of terror tightens its grip.
100
Due more to how it makes you think rather than to what it shows, Night of the Living Dead gets under your skin and burrows into your blood and psyche.
90
Made for pennies in Pittsburgh. Its premise—the unburied dead arise and eat the living—is a powerful combination of the fantastic and the dumbly literal. Over its short, furious course, the picture violates so many strong taboos—cannibalism, incest, necrophilia—that it leaves audiences giddy and hysterical.
90
Witness as the African-American protagonist (who has kept the panicked survivors alive) meets a fate that has more to do with prejudice than carnivorous appetites. Sometimes reality can be as brutal as any nightmare alternative in celluloid.
88
The movie had stopped being delightfully scary about halfway through, and had become unexpectedly terrifying. There was a little girl across the aisle from me, maybe nine years old, who was sitting very still in her seat and crying.
80
Despite mostly unprofessional acting, near nonexistent production values, homemade special effects, and cheap grainy black-and-white film stock, the film is a triumph.
50
Night of the Living Dead is a grainy little movie acted by what appear to be nonprofessional actors, who are besieged in a farm house by some other nonprofessional actors who stagger around, stiff-legged, pretending to be flesh-eating ghouls.

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