October 25, 2010

#12-13 Top 13 George Romero Movies

#12 LAND OF THE DEAD (2005) - The fourth movie in Romero's series of Living Dead films, LAND OF THE DEAD, to some, is considered to be the last thing George Romero made that was worth a shit. It really is something special - Romero with what I believe was the biggest budget of his career and the freedom to make the zombie movie that he wants to make, and without some studio breathing down his neck (well, not too much, anyway). And make that movie, he did. LAND OF THE DEAD has generally gotten a lot of good reviews since its release, and I've even heard some horror fans make the bold statement of it being the best of Romero's zombie films, but I have to say that I'm actually not a big fan of this movie. Well, I like it, but I don't love it. It's generally fast paced and has the feel of an Action Movie more so than a horror, and there's a great social commentary on poverty and the Iraq war. It's a story about the haves and the have-nots and zombies. The annoying characters, however, and the movie's many failed attempts at trying to be humorous keep this from being higher on my list.

#13 DIARY OF THE DEAD (2007) - It's the zombie apocalypse as captured by a bunch of film students (and uploaded to MySpace and YouTube). I really like Romero's commentary here. There's the whole thing with the media manipulating and blowing things out of proportion, which is true. It's all about fear. Society needs something to be afraid of in order to distract them from their own problems. And there's the whole thing about society's reliance on technology, which is also true. If the internet were to suddenly cease, almost every business in the world wouldn't be able to function. But what would you do if any access to the internet whatsoever disappeared? A great band once said: Give me convenience or give me death. DIARY OF THE DEAD is almost a slap in the face to people who are so reliant on the convenience of technology, and that's why I like it. But, unfortunately, DIARY OF THE DEAD also reveals Romero to be pretty clueless when it comes to the things he's trying to satirize. God bless him. Picking this movie apart and harshly criticizing it would be too easy. Romero had a great idea and that's pretty much where it ends. Fun movie, though. I still liked it.


  1. I liked Land of the Dead a lot. Love the scene when all the wealthy people in the tower are getting torn apart by zombies.

    Personally, I would have put Diary below Survival. I actually enjoyed Survival, but couldn't stand Diary of the Dead. If not for the scene with the Amish guy, Diary would have been a complete waste of time.

  2. Land of the Dead has grown on me, but the first time I saw it, there was a bitter taste afterwards. I didnt know if I loved it or hated it. I really like it now, cause I get what Romero was trying to do.

    Diary is hated by many, but not by me! I dont get all the hatred really, its as good a Romero film as any. I liked how he had characters communicating with each other by using the internet to do this, through the net they were telling themselves how to deal with the zombie threat. That was cool.

    I love the last shot on Diary!

  3. I actually prefer LAND over DIARY for the reason that LAND almost feels like a John Carpenter which is odd to say but that is just the vibe I get. Plus, I dig Dennis Hopper as a materialistic businessman who gets his just desserts rather fittingly at the end of the film. Plus, you've got Asia Argento kicking ass which is always a good thing.

  4. Becky: I know I'm in the minority when I say that I'm not a big fan of LAND. I saw it in theaters and have seen it about three times on DVD since, and I just can't get into it. As far as DIARY vs. SURVIVAL, I was expecting DIARY to be the worst of the two based on what I had heard before watching then but ended up enjoying it more. I liked some of the characters even though they were a little douchey and yeah the Amish dude was pretty entertaining.

    Francisco: Glad to hear you like DIARY. I think that just might be the first time I've ever heard anyone outright praise it!

    JD: The Carpenter feel in LAND is understandable. I never thought of that before, but I can see the resemblances now. As big of a Dennis Hopper fan as I am, I didn't really care for him in LAND. He was obviously there for a quick paycheck and I think his performance reflected that. He didn't add anything to the movie, in my opinion. His mere presence, however, adds a few extra points despite his performance being kinda "eh".

  5. Like The Film Connoisseur, I wasn't sure how I felt about LAND the first time I saw it, but subsequent viewings of it have made me appreciate it more. DIARY I really did enjoy for the most part (and I agree on the Amish guy part being super-entertaining)- the only thing that really got to me about the movie was the narration- man, I couldn't stand that girl, and found her extremely annoying- luckily she didn't ruin the movie for me.

  6. Yeah her narration was pretty terrible, Emily. Especially at the beginning when she had to fucking explain everything and make excuses for how the found footage we're supposedly watching looks like an actual movie. "I added music because I want to scare you." REALLY?! Under different circumstances, I would have turned the movie off at that point.

  7. The thing that made me take a while to like LAND was that I was expecting a zombie film that would take place during our times...

    Same as NIGHT takes place during the 60's

    And DAWN takes place during the 70's

    And DAY takes place during the 80's...

    I was expecting LAND to be similar in that way, but instead we got a MAD MAX like post apocalyptic future setting, which wasnt what I was expecting at all. But I've finally pin pointed that, and accepted it for what it is, and now I LOVE it!

  8. Land of the Dead, it had social themes with out being too preachy. Definitely my favorite Dead movie, of course I still need to see Diary and Survival.

  9. Francisco: Yeah, I dunno. I just can never get used to that movie no matter how many times I watch it. It's a good movie to have on in the background or to kill time with, but otherwise I just don't really like it all that much.

    Joe: If you're waiting on seeing DIARY and SURVIVAL to determine what your favorite of the series is, it's a safe bet that none of them will even come close.

  10. A good placing so far, as I would definitely have rated Land over Diary as well, we will have to see how the rest of the list pans out!