10/30/15 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE RECOMMENDATION #30 – Night of the Living Dead (1968).

Night of living dead

They’re coming to get you Barbra.” Such a perfect, memorable, and foreboding line to start a perfect, memorable, and foreboding film. If only young George Romero knew the extent of the explosion he was creating when he did this little flesh-eating zombie film in good ole Pittsburgh. Yep, no-brainer choice today. I usually hold the real no-brainers for Halloween every year, but I was deciding between two films this year and couldn’t choose. Instead, I’m ending my 2015 list with TWO no-brainers. I couldn’t wait anymore; I had to write about each film now. First, it’s this masterpiece. I love the original Night of the Living Dead. It summarizes everything I love about horror films. It’s claustrophobic; it’s dread inducing; it has an array of interesting characters; and as has been dissected many times over, it actually says something. This is Halloween viewing 101. Night of the Living Dead is to Halloween as It’s a Wonderful Life is to Christmas. Almost everyone I know has seen it. Some people watch it every year. In my community, it’s must-watch stuff. But like It’s a Wonderful Life, there are shockingly still a lot of people who have never sat down and watched it. This is for you. This is the kick in the butt for the rest of you to view some real film history. Night of the Living Dead is simple. One morning as a brother and sister are visiting their father’s grave, a strange frantic man attacks them seemingly from nowhere. The sister escapes to an isolated farmhouse for safety. There she meets an array of extremely variant characters. And just as the threats of the undead build on the outside, the threats of personality and power clash on the inside. It’s this duel threat that set NOTLD apart from all the rest. Who’s side are you on? Do we move to the cellar or stay upstairs? Each character is kind of right, and each character is kind of wrong. There is no exact black and white, which is genius. And speaking of black and white, the gritty visuals in this film are incredible. The black and white creates such a realistic claustrophobia that you are instantly pulled deep into this world. As the relentless zombies continue to try to break into the house, and the characters start to crumble amongst themselves, you can feel your chest tightening. THe zombies are slow-moving, but not brainless. They can open car doors. They can take rocks and smash windows. They can think more than most zombies, which makes the threat more real. And when more and more of them start to surround the house… chills. And don’t even get me started on the scene in teh cellar. And of course the absolutely gut-twisting finale. Oh, man. I have to stop or I’ll ruin everything. Dammit, I love this movie. I could go on for ages, but I’ll just leave it here. If you haven’t seen this already, just go experience it for yourself. Seriously, this is must watch stuff here.

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2 thoughts on “10/30/15 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE RECOMMENDATION #30 – Night of the Living Dead (1968).

  1. It’s nice to revisit this one. I sometimes get so caught up in how much I love Dawn and Day that I overlook Night. It’s a wonderful and important movie in so many ways.

    Nice review!

  2. Pingback: 10/31/15 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE RECOMMENDATION #31 – The Evil Dead (1981). | Musings of a Scary Horror Writer.

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