From the category archives:

Zombie Movies

If you haven’t heard about the Zombieland, the movie…ZOMBIELAND

Well…..
get ready for a blood splattered treat!

zombie movie, great zombie movies - best zombie movie reviews by houseofzombie.com

zombie movie, great zombie movies - best zombie movie reviews by houseofzombie.com

Woody Harrelson stars as a bad ass who has mad zombie killin’ skillz in what looks to be a fun-filled zombie slaying romp.

Whoever wrote this movie must be a big fan of the Xbox 360 game Dead Rising, because the fun of this movie loks to be the glee they take in dispatching the undead in various ways.   Shotguns, shovels, pianos, even amusement park rides, all become weapons of zombie destruction.

zombie movie, great zombie movies - best zombie movie reviews by houseofzombie.com

zombie movie, great zombie movies - best zombie movie reviews by houseofzombie.com

I am definitely looking forward to this movie, and am glad to see film makers having fun with the zombie genre once again.

I’m hoping they don’t screw up the plot with a convoluted  “man vs. man in a zombie vs. man world” storyline, but I’ll be there to see this just for the hellacious slo-mo zombie chase shots.   Zombieland will be released October 9, 2009.

My favorite ZombieLand Trailer is below…

[wpyt_profile Zombie]ubr5EQzaPmQ[/wpyt_profile Zombie]

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Night of the Living Dead and the Modern Zombie

Upon its release in 1968, George Romero’s Night of the Living Dead reinvented not only the idea of "zombies" but also the entire horror genre. It defined a whole new type of monster and irrevocably transformed the way in which people were scared by movies and, by extention, monsters.

   In the late 1960s, America had been subjected to the horror of the Vietnam War. With the brutal onslaught of gruesome imagery generated by the media surrounding the war, America no longer needed "monsters" to scare them. The "horror" generated by mankind itself was frightening enough. Night of the Living Dead capitalized on this by resorting to the same nihilistic attitude toward death and destruction that was generated by the war. Its monsters, or zombies, were not merely brainwashed servants or vampire-like parasites but something else altogether: "Romero’s living dead are..a rough combination of zombie, werewolf and vampire. they exist in a nether world between life and death like zombies, they devour like werewolves and they communicate their "disease" by biting like vampires." (Paul, 263). The zombies in Night.. were weaklings, frail corpses whose only strength was in numbers. They possessed no supernatural abilities other than the fact that they were reanimated (Night.. is also unique in that it provides a scientific explanation for the return of the corpses–"radiation from a crashed spacecraft"). The zombies in Night.. exhibited physical weaknesses that were parallel to those of humans because they were merely humans, or at least the animated shells of humans. Night.. acknowledged that the enemy was us and us only, not some "other" or tyrannical force from beyond. It was, in essence, complete apocalypse that, unlike the "atomic mutant" movies of the previous decade, was rooted solely in humanity.

   Night of the Living Dead also succeeded in shattering taboos of family and personal relations that had, until that time, been left untouched by American culture. Upon transformation into zombies, the characters in the film exhibited no moral responsibility at all, thus allowing them to take part in such ghastly activity as incest, cannibalism and parricide. Indeed, the film showed (zombie) brother devouring sister and (zombie) daughter devouring mother and father. This is nothing to say of the fact that all of the film’s characters, including the obviously heroic protagonist, die in the end, thus reinforcing the film’s depiction of all humans as flawed and vulnerable.

   Zombie films after Night of the Living Dead basically followed in its footsteps. Indeed, many films, such as Romero’s own sequels Dawn of the Dead (1978) and Day of the Dead (1985), as well as Zombie (1979) and Return of the Living Dead (1985) etc., were essentially carbon copies of Romero’s masterpiece, complete with overflowing cemetaries and strolling corpses hungry for human flesh. Many of these, such as Evil Dead 2 (1988) and Return of the Living Dead 2 (1988), shared Night..‘s challenge of societal taboos. In fact, by this time, such activity had become the cinematic norm and no longer seemed shocking even. Truly, to see a zombie attack his mother or sink his teeth into his sister had become common, even cliche, material for horror films. Indeed, by the time that Michael Jackson’s celebrated "Thriller" (see image to the left) arrived on MTV in 1984, zombies of the Romero variety had become safe for the whole family, even though, ironically, it was exactly that family that those zombies sought to destroy.

Source: http://www.umich.edu/~engl415/zombies/zombie.html

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Early Zombie Movies

  In 20th century American culture, the idea of zombies has traditionally been portrayed almost exclusively through the medium of film. The prototype for early zombie movies was White Zombie (1932), which took its subject matter directly from the zombie myths of Hatian folklore. White Zombie, one of the celibrated horror films of the "Universal era" (which also included important versions of Dracula, Frankenstein, The Wolfman and The Mummy) starred Bela Lugosi as a rich Haitian businessman who had taken upon himself to win the hand of a lady by turning her husband into a zombie. He had hoped that, by doing this, he would be able to rid her of her connection to her husband and thus clear the way for she and his romantic union.

  Other zombie movies of the 30s and 40s followed suit insofar as they generally portrayed zombies as they existed in Haitian folklore: as beings whose brains had been zapped by some "master" who was then able to control their actions. Many of these pictures, such as The Voodoo Man (1944) and I Walked With a Zombie (1943) maintained that zombies were directly rooted, geographically and thematically, in Haitian myth. Other films, such as Revolt of the Zombies (1936) and Zombies on Broadway (1945) kept the theme but altered the geographic location. Also, while some of these films reinforced the idea that zombies were, in fact, the reanimated dead, some films portrayed zombies as being the products of a sort of malevolent hypnosis. In such films, the monsters were not "dead" at all, but merely humans who were reduced to a trance-like state and who were, again, controlled by a "master."

   During the "Hammer Films era" of the 1950s and 1960s, zombies began to a adopt a more sinister air. Films such as I Eat Your Skin (1961) and The Plague of the Zombies (1965) offered zombies that were forced to maintain their posthumous existence by actually consuming human flesh. This version of the zombie was generally still "controlled" by a "master," but was awakened from its deathly state by some sort of supernatural or otherwise extraordinary force (satanic incantation, etc.). Here we see the invention of the "zombie-as-cannibal" type that was to characterize the genre for years to come. Virtually any given zombie from one of these movies was little more than "an utter cretin, a vampire with a lobotomy." (Twitchell, 265).

Source: http://www.umich.edu/~engl415/zombies/zombie.html

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