Dawn of the Dead Deep Dark Thoughts
Zombie movies rule!!!!!!!!!! I can’t get enough of the living dead, but unfortunately, there are so many exceptionally bad zombie movies out there. Luckily for the fans, there are a few that have helped to fill the staple of our zombie diet and at the top of our nutrition chart is “Dawn of the Dead”.
One of my favorites, and definitely one of my all-time top five horror films is George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead. I can remember seeing it for the first time as though it were yesterday. Unfortunately, when “Dawn” was released in theaters (1978), I was way too young to go see it, but it was the first video I rented when I bought a VCR. Earlier I had instantly fallen in loved with “Night of the Living Dead,” having first seen it on MTV of all places. This was back when MTV was forced to come up with alternative programming because they only had about 10 videos that they showed a million times a day. On the weekends, they used to run cult movies (Remember “Reefer Madness?” made me want to inhale.) and always played NOTLD right around Halloween. Once Id saw it, I was hooked on zombies.
Dawn of the Dead is in my top two zombie movies. I loved Fulci’s Zombie, but I just watched “Dawn” on laserdisc from Elite (awesome laserdisc, a must for any horror fan) and it blew me away. The jury is still out on which is number one in my book, but both movies are amazing in their own unique ways.
I loved so many things about this movie starting with the mall. If zombies walked the earth today, my local mall would definitely serve as my home away from home. It’s a perfect place to hole up in and everything you would ever need is at your fingertips. Second, the zombies in “Dawn” were fabulous but not as cool as the ones in Zombie. They were comical at times and terrifying at others, which added a unique and entertaining blend to the film. Third, Romero really did an outstanding job with character development. You really feel for these characters and the struggle they endure. Fourth and finally, the Goblin scorelet me just say is truly amazing.
Many people have inferred that “Dawn” is Romero’s social commentary on the times, which he has flatly denied on numerous occasions. Surely, a writer’s work is always going to be influenced by his beliefs, but I believe that these movies are for horror fans and not the general public. Overall, “Dawn” was, is, and always will be, a horror classic. Rumors of a new “Living Dead” movie have been circulating for years and even on the Elite disc, Romero said he would love to make another one. Please, George, make it more like “Dawn of the Dead!”
Again, as always, if you have anything you can add to help improve this page or if you have any comments, criticisms, and/or suggestions, please e-mail me.
Dawn of the Dead Story
These classic words ring out the sweet sound of man’s ultimate demise in this new zombie world. We have pushed around the forces and spirits of this world, now it’s their time to strike back (always the theme of any good zombie movie). Can anyone remember the speculative cause for the dead coming back to life in the original “Night of the Living Dead?” As a space probe returned from its exploration of the planet Venus, it mysteriously exploded before entering the atmosphere. I rather liked Peter’s (Ken Foree) explanation from above.
The story begins with a continuation of the theme from “Night of the Living Dead”: the dead have arisen and are now stalking the living. Four strangers, fleeing in a helicopter, head north looking to escape this horror. Running low on fuel, they happen on one of America’s social enigmas; the shopping mall.
This is where you would find me during a zombie invasion. I’d either be in the Suncoast Video or at the sporting goods store. Boy, would I be in heaven? One problem, zombies seem to like the mall too. After cleaning out the deadbeat shoppers in their new home, our heroes are about to begin to live the life of luxury, right?. . WRONG! Unfortunately, someone else has their eyes on this prize gang of looters led by bad-boy, Tom Savini.
This movie is a basic requirement for the completion of your horror degree, without it, your grade is I” as incomplete. Don’t flunk out of Horror U. See “Dawn of the Dead” and receive your degree in zombie-ology.
Dawn of the Dead Facts
- Dawn of the Dead was shot on a budget of $1.5 million, ten times the budget of the original “Night of the Living Dead.
- The mall used for the film is in Monroeville, PA. George Romero personally knew the people who owned it.
- The mall music was written into the script because the crew didn’t know how to turn it off when it came on early in the morning
- This was Tom Savini’s major breakout effort, establishing him as a master in the makeup field and it leads directly to his getting the job for Friday the 13th.
- George and his wife, Christine, appear in the opening scenes of the movie. See their picture on Dawn Pic & Sounds Page.
- There were two scores for this movie, one by Romero (which was taken mostly from library stock music), and another by the Italian group, Goblin. The Goblin soundtrack is the one I remember. I only recently heard Romero’s score on Elite’s laserdisc. I personally prefer Goblin’s score. It sticks in my mind as strongly as the visual imagery of this film.
- Dario Argento was one of the main driving forces in getting this movie made. He approached Romero about making a sequel to “Night of the Living Dead,” which was a huge hit in Europe. In return, Argento would have the right to re-cut the film for European release. In his cut, Argento took out some of the gore and added dialog. “Dawn” was then released with Argento’s name attached and called “Zombie.”
- The helicopter blades that decapitated the zombie were animated.
- There was an alternate “suicide” ending for “Dawn of the Dead” and it goes like this: After the bikers let all the zombies in, Peter and Fran escape to their apartment in the mall. Peter tells Fran to go on without him because he doesn’t want to go. This is the same as the regular ending. Peter then decides to kill himself instead of fighting off the zombies.
- Fran goes up to the helicopter and decides she doesn’t want to go on alone, so she sticks her head up into the blades and gets decapitated. The credits role showing the helicopter still running and at the end, sputtering and running out of fuel. I would like to have seen Romero use this alternative ending as it is much more original.
- “Dawn” is heavily censored in Germany.
Dawn of the Dead Merchandise
- Visit George Romero’s official webpage.
- Capcom Producer Yoshiki Okamoto told the editors of “Electronic Gaming Monthly” that “His [Romeros] script wasn’t good, so Romero was fired.” E-mail Capcom and tell them how pissed you are at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Visit the King of Splatter, Tom Savini‘s official webpage.
- Visit Claude Simonetti’s (Goblin) official webpage.
- See Daemonia performing the themes to “Dawn of the Dead” live.
Dawn of the Dead Extras
- Buy the Special Edition DVD (not 30th-anniversary edition) of the original “Night of the Living Dead” at Amazon.com
- Buy the DVD of the remake of “Night of the Living Dead” at Amazon.com
- Buy the “Dawn of the Dead Ultimate DVD Boxset at Amazon.com
- Buy the DVD of the “Day of the Dead” at Amazon.com
Dawn of the Dead Cast & Crew
|Directed by||George A. Romero|
|Runtime||Italy:119 / UK:140 / USA:125 / USA:139 (16mm version)|
|Certification||Germany:18 (heavily cut) / Germany:(Banned) (VV) / UK:18|
|Also Known As||Zombi (1977) (Italian title)|
Zombie: Dawn of the Dead (1978)
|Writen By||George A. Romero|
|Cast||David Emge… Stephen|
Ken Foree…. Peter
Scott H. Reiniger…. Roger
Gaylen Ross…. Francine
David Crawford…. Dr. Foster
David Early…. Mr. Berman
Richard France…. Scientist
Howard K. Smith…. TV Commentator
Daniel Dietrich…. Givens
Fred Baker …. Commander
James A. Baffico…. Wooley
Rod Stouffer…. Young Officer on Roof
Jees Del Gre…. Old Priest
Clayton McKinnon…. Officer in Project Apt
John Rice …. Officer in Project Apt
Ted Bank…. Officer at Police Dock
|Produced by||United Film / Laurel Group|
|Music By||Dario Argento|
|Cinematography by||Michael Gornicki|
|Film Editing by||George A. Romero|
|Costume Design by||Josie Caruso|
Dawn Of the Dead Pics & Sound
Dawn Of the Dead Horror Sound
Dawn Of The Death Fanspeak
RE: This movie is great!
I remember when I first saw this movie, it left a mark in my life.
George really does an excellent job with the feeling. I love movies about Zombies and out of them all this one blows (except the Night of the Living Dead) all of them away. George’s work has inspired me to make horror movies that have
impact and value. Let’s face it now a day’s Horror isnt what it should be. Since I was little I have been Plagued with nightmares, but they dont bother me. I think of them as an adventure, especially the ones about the living dead. Due to George’s work, it has given me ideas I could only dream about.Thanks George Romero for everything.
RE: Dawn of the Dead
Among the high-budget intellectually devoid horror movies that littered the 90’s like so much refuse, it’s good to see someone paying homage to the ‘real horror’ movies of the 80’s ( and in Night of the Living Deads case- even earlier). The 80’s were full of a lot of crap; Reagan, disco, the A-Team, but at least the horror genre’ kept it real.
Re: Dawn Rules ! ! !
To me Dawn will always be the best Living Dead epic ever made. Let me explain. Dawn had the best characters becauase we really cared about them. It had the best soundtrack [by far] from Goblin. It had the best storyline. If Romero makes a fourth Dead epic than I hope to God that he makes it like Dawn; disturbing,humorous and entertaining. I would also like to say that I recently got the Dawn director’s cut on tape and its amazing. The best Dawn will ever look. On one final note,I think Dario Argento takes way to much credit for the film. It gets me mad to know that his name is tagged on the Euroversion instead of the genious behind the film George Romero! None of Argento’s films could ever compare to Romeros,not even Tenebrae!