5/7 DAWN OF THE DEAD - And here she is... the mother of all Zombie Films. From 1978 onward this became the blueprint, standard or archetype to be upheld to. 95% of Zombie films since 1978 to present have been influenced by this film in some way, means or other. And the other 5% remaining were influenced by his original Night Of The Living Dead. (Prior to 69' most Zombies were 'Voodoo' related with one great exception pre-NOTLD Hammer's 'Plague of the Zombies' that double billed with 'Prince of Darkness' in the mid-sixties) And if someone made a Zombie film and say they weren't influenced by DOTD or NOTLD - their idols or filmmakers they adore WERE. Trust me. They were. Sorry. It's a really hard thing to top your original classic - but, Romero did and hurled Zombies into the Modern era in all its red painted bloody gorey [sic] glory! People some years later knocked Tom Savini's early SFX work here with some of the grey faced Zombies etc - but, let's bear in mind, it had never been done before on this scale. Hundreds of Zombie Actors, Extras - then, it truly was unprecedented. Especially still at a relatively low budget working in a mall evenings making a very ambitious film. Clean up alone must of took hours. Hundreds of extras seems like a walk in the park now on any given TWD episode. Heck, half are real, the other hundred CGI. Here, everything was real. I think the makeup is very charming today and every modern Zombie film owes some gratitude to this film anyway. Romero updated the Zombie 'look' for his original third-parter 'Day Of The Dead' in 1985 - but, isn't it powerful that this film is so great that the makeup doesn't take anything away from what a truly outstanding story this is. And, WOW. This was the birth of someone turning into a Zombie for the first time on screen, before our eyes. Still terrifying and sad all at once. Poor Roger. He tried... not to come back.
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