DAWN OF THE DEAD

3.5 Stars
Year Released: 2004
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 100 minutes
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This isn’t your parent’s “Dawn Of The Dead”. This is a leaner, faster and at times meaner remake / re-imagination of George Romero’s 1978 zombie classic.
For those of you that haven’t spent much time in Romeroville, “Dawn Of The Dead” is the tale of an apocalyptic zombie plague that destroys everything in its path. A group of survivors hole up in a suburban shopping mall as they attempt to come up with a plan to escape zombie-town.
The 2004 “Dawn of The Dead” has a lot more in common with 28 Days Later than it does with the original film. This “Dawn Of The Dead” features running zombies, shaky handheld camera shots and…more running zombies. Much of the deep character development and social commentary of the original is missing, but like I mentioned before this is a harder, faster MTV version of DOTD, which is also why it’s more fun than a pirate ship full of monkeys.
This “Dawn Of The Dead” pulls no punches. From the opening scene to the end credit sequence (be sure you stay through the end credits) this movie isn’t afraid to rip your heart out and eat it. First time director Zack Snyder has done an amazing job of creating a sense of doom and dread while sprinkling it with some wicked humor and amazing music.
The cast is great even if there are a lot of characters to keep track of. Rich and pampered Steve (Ty Burrell) is hilarious. Police officer Kenneth (Ving Rhames) is the pragmatic glue that keeps the group’s heads screwed on straight and Ana (Sara Polley) delivers as the every woman who just wants to make some sense out of what’s happening. The group is a cross section of society much like CBS’s “Survivor”. Except instead of getting voted off the island you get eaten by blood-thirsty zombies.
Some might argue that the only true “Dawn Of The Dead” is and will always be George Romero’s zombie Opus. In the long run, this “Dawn Of The Dead” may not be a horror/zombie classic, but what it is for the time being is a fun, scary and slick popcorn movie that should please even hardcore horror fans and scare the crap out of everyone else.
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Posted on March 18, 2004 in Reviews by
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