|Directed by:||George A. Romero|
|Written by:||George A. Romero|
|Cast:||Simon Baker, John Leguizamo, Dennis Hopper, Asia Argento, Robert Joy|
This one has really grown on me over the past couple of years. Wasn't digging it much the first time I saw it. Liked it a little more with a second viewing, and after seeing it on TV a couple times here lately I've really to come to enjoy it a lot. For one thing I really love the atmosphere of this one, taking place almost completely at night. And even though it's the first of Romero's series with more of an open setting than the traditional one-spot, the contained city still offers a sense of enclosure.
I like the point of time that this story takes place. We're past the discovery of the zombies, we're past trying to fight them all or trying to understand how they function. No, the zombies are here to stay and these people have learned to live with it. Zombies are only half of the threat in this movie. Instead, it focuses more on how the outbreak has changed us for the worst, losing our sense of humanity and turning us into greedy survivalists.
Romero presents a civilization that has gotten so used to these zombies that they turn them into forms of entertainment. They have zombies on chains that you take pictures with, or practice your zombie shooting in the paintball range. They even host UFC style fights between men and zombies.
And I also liked a lot of the characters. Leguizamo is annoying as expected. But I really liked Simon Baker's character, and his deformed wing man. Cool to see the sultry Asia Argento get a good part. Nice little thank you letter to her father's contribution to Dawn of the Dead. And Dennis Hopper is the man. Always. His character was quite despicable, but Hopper has a way of creating lovable villains.
The only things that really bothered me about the movie was the use of the digital effects. I didn't expect that from Romero, and I'm quite disappointed that he decided to go that route, when he's accomplished so many outstanding practical effects in the past. The makeup and prosthetics haven't vanished or anything, but there are a few incidents where the computer generation seems unnecessary, and never welcomed.
BOTTOM LINE: I really like this movie. It's really grown on me. The story isn't anything special and the precense of the digital effects was a disappointment, but overall I really liked the characters and had a lot of fun with the zombie action. A worthy addition to Romero's saga, and just an all around cool zombie flick. Oh and the video game for this movie....KICKS ASS!!!