How do you follow an action packed zombie fest like "Dawn Of The
Dead"? Romero followed it with a more reserved, quieter movie that
still delivers the goods but not on the same level as its predecessor. I
know a lot of fans were disappointed by this lower-key entry but Arrow dug
it. Think about it: how can you top Dawn in terms of gore action?
I really enjoyed the
reflections this film makes on humanity and our values. Only when society
is stripped of its rules does the real meaning of life come into
perspective. This point is driven home on many occasions by John (Terry
Alexander). I related a lot to the character and if I were in his shoes I
would have had the same idea: Take the helicopter, go to a deserted island
and live the rest of my life with the basics: food, sex, nature and peace.
The dude made sense to me.
I also liked the E.T.
like relationship the Doc (Richard Liberty) has with Bub the zombie. He
tries to train him (like a pet) and teach him things. I always forget that
zombies were once human, this subplot reminded me. We don’t see that
approach towards a zombie too often.
One thing that hinders
the movie is the endless bickering between the army dudes and the doctors.
At first I perceived it as conflict and conflict is always good. But as
the movie rolled on it felt like fighting for the sakes of fighting. The
army dudes are way too one note: bad. You can’t reason with them and
that makes for an eventually boring back and forth. I will admit that I
did enjoy every time Joseph Pilato threatened to kill someone. Why do I
love psychos so much?
Considering that Sarah
is the only chick underground, that none of the army dudes have gotten
laid in eons and that the movie hints at it, I’m surprised that there
wasn’t a rape sequence. Not that watching rape scenes are fun but I
think it would have elevated the human conflict fer sure. Why hint at it
when you can just do it.
Another thing I didn’t
dig is the rushed ending. It really felt like Romero ran out of money and
had to edit what he had. The ending is abrupt and kind of a cheat,
especially since the movie leads you on, making you think something else
will happen before the last frame.
The flick is very
talky and since half the characters are one-dimensional it sometimes makes
for boring scenes. But the film’s message is strong, the characters are
mostly likeable and Romero really hits the ball out of the park with the
last twenty-minutes. The ending is filled with spectacular gore and makes
it all worthwhile. A though provoking blood filled zombie flick??? Right
here gore fans…