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Dawn of the Dead (1978)

Unrated | | Action, Adventure, Horror | 24 May 1979 (USA)
Trailer
2:40 | Trailer
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.

Director:

George A. Romero
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Popularity
3,147 ( 168)
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
David Emge ... Stephen
Ken Foree ... Peter
Scott H. Reiniger ... Roger
Gaylen Ross ... Francine
David Crawford David Crawford ... Dr. Foster
David Early David Early ... Mr. Berman
Richard France ... Scientist
Howard Smith ... TV Commentator
Daniel Dietrich Daniel Dietrich ... Givens
Fred Baker Fred Baker ... Commander
James A. Baffico James A. Baffico ... Wooley (as Jim Baffico)
Rod Stouffer Rod Stouffer ... Young Officer on Roof
Jese Del Gre Jese Del Gre ... Old Priest
Clayton McKinnon Clayton McKinnon ... Officer in Project Apt.
John Rice ... Officer in Project Apt.
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Storyline

The zombie apocalypse has hit Earth. Two personnel from a TV station and two policemen set off in a helicopter to find a safe place to hide out. Their search leads them to a shopping mall where they manage to find a place that, while not zombie-free, is quite secure. So far, so good. Written by grantss

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

George A. Romero's classic 1978 gore-fest, Dawn of the Dead, is back. See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The scene between Roger and Peter in the trucks when they are kidding each other about their height as (Scott H. Reinger is 5'7 and Ken Foree is 6'5) was entirely improvised by the two actors. See more »

Goofs

When Roger runs out of a truck and back toward the mall, one particular zombie in a red-and-black striped shirt gets out of character and decides to tuck in his shirt. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Tony, Man at WGON - TV ('You all right?'): [after Francine awakens from a nightmare] You alright?
[Francine nods]
Tony, Man at WGON - TV ('You all right?'): Shit's really hit the fan.
See more »

Crazy Credits

George A. Romero appears on screen as a TV Station Director (the bearded man wearing a scarf and a blue shirt) as his name appears, listing him as "Editor", in the on-screen credits beneath him. See more »

Alternate Versions

The film underwent fifteen months of censorship haggling in Australia (both the Argento and Romero cuts were banned for a time), before being passed with an R18+ certificate in February 1980. Already pre-cut by four minutes, the Romero version required the removal of a further two minutes before being approved with a 120 minute runtime. The cut scenes were:
  • The exploding head in the apartment.
  • The basement zombies enthusiastically ripping into flesh.
  • The helicopter zombie getting the top of his head lopped off.
  • Tom Savini burying a machete in a zombie's head after saying "Say goodbye, creep!".
  • "Flyboy" being attacked and bitten in the elevator.
  • Zombies ripping intestines from a biker's belly.
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Connections

Referenced in Sam and Max: Night of the Raving Dead (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Ragtime Razzamatazz
(uncredited)
Composed by Herbert Chappell
Published by De Wolfe Music Ltd.
Mall Montage Scene
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User Reviews

 
Still my favorite horror film...
10 February 2000 | by Quinoa1984See all my reviews

When you want brutal, look no further, but when you also want to see perhaps the greatest of all comic-book movies not based on a comic-book, it's in George Romero's original take on his continuing mythology. It's not just one of the towering horror films, or horror comedies (what will a poor dead fellow do when the escalator starts?!) but one of the great sequels, more ambitious and ass-kicking than its predecessor, with a filmmaker more confident and technically proficient with his abilities.

Romero didn't originally want to do *any* sequel to his original 'Night', but after a visit by some friends to a soon-to-open mall nearby his hometown of Pittsburgh, it struck a chord as to who would be coming here – and what so much consumerism in one place would mean. "Why do they come here?" one of the four survivors that happens upon this mall swarming with these flesh-eaters asks another. "This meant something to them. Instinct, maybe. This was an important part of their lives," he responds.

I don't think necessarily Romero meant to show the film as any sort of 'This is what will happen!" type of social horror thing. It's more about, this is where we are at NOW, and in that sense, though broader and a whole LOT bloodier, it holds a place right next to a film like Network as one of the magnificent satires of its time and place, and as much about what the public is like. Romero acts as both pessimist and optimist in this world though; past all the chopped limbs, exploding heads (oh yeah!), Tom Savini stunt and make-up and intestines ripped apart, what holds up the film for me is seeing these four characters come to grip with the horror they've made for themselves, holding up in this "paradise" of a mall.

Balls-to-the-wall horror, social horror, and some genuine paranoid horror stuff (note to self, never try and fire a gun at a single zombie when in a dark room full of electrical wiring and pipes), and plenty of rock and roll attitude, this is a personal favorite and the most entertaining horror film of its time. And the Goblin music soundtrack… yummy.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA | Italy

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

24 May 1979 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$650,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$159,822
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Ultimate Final Cut) | (Dario Argento's European Version) |

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (German prints)| Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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