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The Return of the Living Dead (1985)

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When two bumbling employees at a medical supply warehouse accidentally release a deadly gas into the air, the vapors cause the dead to rise again as zombies.

Director:

Dan O'Bannon

Writers:

Rudy Ricci (story), John A. Russo (story) (as John Russo) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
3,512 ( 249)
4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Clu Gulager ... Burt
James Karen ... Frank
Don Calfa ... Ernie
Thom Mathews ... Freddy
Beverly Randolph ... Tina
John Philbin ... Chuck
Jewel Shepard ... Casey
Miguel A. Núñez Jr. ... Spider (as Miguel Nunez)
Brian Peck ... Scuz
Linnea Quigley ... Trash
Mark Venturini ... Suicide
Jonathan Terry ... Colonel Glover
Cathleen Cordell ... Colonel's Wife
Drew Deighan Drew Deighan ... Paramedic #1
James Dalesandro ... Paramedic #2
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Storyline

When a bumbling pair of employees at a medical supply warehouse accidentally release a deadly gas into the air, the vapors cause the dead to re-animate as they go on a rampage through Louisville, Kentucky seeking their favorite food, brains. Written by Todd A. Bobenrieth <TAB146@PSUVM.EDU>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They're Back From The Grave and Ready To Party!

Genres:

Comedy | Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM | MySpace

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 August 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Return of the Living Dead See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,403,000, 18 August 1985, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$14,237,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (workprint)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (CFI)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Brian Peck, who plays Scuz, also appears as a zombie who's clawing his way out of his grave. See more »

Goofs

Frank closes the round dome of the canister that burst before he and Freddy leave the basement. In the next basement scene the dome is raised up in the open position. See more »

Quotes

Frank: The army came in and closed it all off.
Freddy: So how come you know about it?
Frank: A typical army fuck up, the transportation department got the orders crossed. They sent those bodies here!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The following phony disclaimer precedes the movie: "The events portrayed in this film are all true. The names are real names of real people and real organizations." See more »

Alternate Versions

The original version of the movie had "The Damned's 'Dead Beat Dance'" on the scene where all of the punks are driving in Suicide's car, but some versions have a different song and it is a little longer. You can tell if the version you have is the original if there is loud laughter after Col. Glover says "Look, we've been through all this before. They could be anywhere" to his wife. See more »

Connections

Spoofed in South Park: Pinkeye (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Nothing for You
Performed by T.S.O.L. (as T.S.O.L.)
Composed by T.S.O.L. (as T.S.O.L.)
Produced by Ron Goudie, Chris Gray and T.S.O.L. (as T.S.O.L.)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
"Straight comedy..."
13 March 2002 | by poe426See all my reviews

The best comedy is played straight, and there are few films "straighter" than horror movies (in which the intent is, ostensibly, to terrify). Dan O'Bannon's "straight comedy" is gut-bustingly funny. [I also remember being impressed by his performance in the delightful DARK STAR, which turned up at an art house showing along with the STAR WARS parody, HARDWARE WARS.] Intense, and boasting great music and some of the best performances ever seen in a fright film (including Clu Gulager, James Karen and Don Calfa, veterans all, whose frantic on-screen antics are the cornerstones of this film), RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD is one of those "must-see" movies no serious fan should miss. The cinematography is simply stunning, and the fx are 100% believable. It's amazing that O'Bannon hasn't directed more often: it's clear that he belongs behind a camera.


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