Sunday, 12 February 2012

Night of the Living Dead (1968)

Film of 2012 #31
Some Spoilers

The first Dead film from a master of the genre, that is George A. Romero, If you had asked me before I watched this film I would have told you that I have seen it many times. I have to be honest and say that getting to the end of this film I was surprised. It did not go where I thought it did and then I realised I have seen many of the famous scenes and hear many of the great quotes and I have seen the remake starring Tony Todd right through. So it is now rectified I have seen the original film, it is the story of an outbreak of flesh eating ghoul's, the word zombie is never used in this film. The story starts with us meeting Barbara and her brother Johnny and you follow Barbara until we meet Ben in the farmhouse where the majority of the film takes place. 

I have heard that this film is a metaphor for the race struggles of the 1960's and it is strange to see a Black man in form of Duane Jones playing Ben as the lead and the heroic role of the piece at this time in history. And I suppose there is something in the ending but overall I was not lost in a lot of metaphors it was just a good tense horror film that still holds up today as a scary film. And even though people claim that zombies are not scary as they move so slowly they are continuous and they just keep coming and there are always more of them. 

This is a good opener to the Dead trilogy but I have to say that Dawn of the Dead and Day of the Dead are stronger films for me and I would choose to watch them before watching Night again. Overall though it is a film that started a genre and a change in how horror films were made and looked at and it holds up as a classic of it's time. It is a must see for anyone that likes horror films or enjoys film history. This is a 3 star recommend, it has it's flaws but is well worth seeing and due to a mistake at the time it has been in the Public Domain for nearly 40 years so is easy to access. 

1 comment:

  1. This is my favourite Zombie film. I'm not a fan of the Romero type zombies except in this film. It's a fresh new idea that doesn't shove its metaphor down your throat and it's a fun watch too.

    I like the way the main character just happens to be a black man rather then being written in a way to point it out. This works with Ripley too. They're not written as a woman/black man but as a fully rounded characters instead.