While filming a low-budget horror film, Jason (Joshua Close) and his film school friends hear news reports of zombie sightings. As the living dead close in on the film crew, Jason seizes the opportunity to add real blood and guts to his movie. Meanwhile the American government promises to stop the violent uprising, but the relentless zombies gain an advantage by wiping out all forms of communication with the outside world.
“I’m just stealing sh*t. But you… what’s a guy with a video camera doing in the women’s dorm, huh?”
For most of us George Romero helped write the book on zombie movies. The image of a slow moving flesh eating corpse has lurched its way into popular culture. Movies featuring zombies from before 1968 really don’t fit what we think of zombies anymore; simple dead raised by voodoo to be a slave to the living didn’t cut it anymore. Romero and his fellow filmmakers changed our thoughts completely about what a zombie is and made it a classic icon. He was able to match his vision with the follow up “Dawn of the Dead (1978)” by adding color, amping the gore to beyond what Americans’ were used to and adding social satire to the mix.
Afterwards Romeo has been having trouble keeping up with his own ghost; his own zombies have over taken him. “Day of the Dead” is mostly known for being even gorier than “Dawn” was, and “Land of the Dead” is known for the “thinking” zombies (and to many a disappointment); but no one has said that these films are anywhere as good as the first two. As the years go by people are kinder in their reviews to the second two films as we all agree that they are better than most zombie movies.
With “Diary of the Dead” Romero has returned to the beginning of the zombie plague, to the zombie roots, so to speak. We watch the footage that make up the movie from college students who were filming a mummy picture when the madness started and all they want to do is get home to some kind of safety. On the way they meet looters, what’s left of the National Guard and zombies, more and more zombies. The characters wonder what is safe and what is worth saving of the world. They get picked off one by one until they make a run to friends’ mansion for their last stand.
First of all what worked for me:
* The acid eating a zombies head.
*The mute character’s first appearance starting with a bang and then writing his name on his board as if it never happened.
*The echoing of the mummy movie footage later then the actor from the mummy movie is now undead.
What doesn’t work for me:
*The movie message about the current “youtube” culture seems heavy-handed.
*The footage from security cams having static to remind you that they are security cams.
*One of the main characters continues to film footage as a friend is being attacked.
A movie that wants us to think about our culture and our viewing habits and enjoy a good zombie attack has to be a film that you would want to watch late into the night. Pop up some popcorn, hide behind the couch. I give it 3.5 stars out of 5. It was released by Artfire Films and you can find it on Amazon.com and dimensionextreme.com.