If you know me, you know that I love Zombie movies (“z-movies”). In anticipation of the the upcoming “Zombieland” (which looks SICK), I decided to put up a short list of my five favorite z-movies of all time.
The criteria for this list? 1) High production quality 2) Excitement 3) High Zombie-body count 4) Humor.
#5: 28 Days Later
Some purists will tell you that 28 Days is not a zombie movie because the “zombies” are actually just people infected by a virus AND they don’t need head-shots to be killed. However, in my humble opinion, 28 Days is a z-movie; and the genre owes a lot to it. 28 Days later was probably the first z-movie with a decent budget, and it inspired the zombie-renaissance of the early 21st century. 28 Days is dark, no comedy here, but the cinematography and the acting are excellent. It earns a major bonus on my scale for the appearance of the tenth Doctor (i.e. Dr. Who) Christopher Eccleston as a fascist army commander. WARNING: the sequel sucks.
#4: Dawn of the Dead (1978)
George Romero is undoubtedly the God Father or all things Zombie. He came back with a vengeance with Land of the Dead, but sadly, it just did not live up to my expectations. On the other hand, despite a low-budget and cheesy 1970’s effects, the original Dawn of the Dead still rocks! Why? Redneck hunters combing the countryside on a zombie-safari; a mad-maxesque biker gang slaying zombies in a mall; AND an excellent screen play. Perhaps this movie’s biggest draw-back is that it lacks intentional humor.
#3: Dance of the Dead
This movie is definitely the dark horse of this list. It’s an indy film, with a fairly low-budget. BUT, the production quality, the acting, and even the soundtrack are awesome. The premise? “We’re going to prom to kick some Zombie ass!” This movie is fun, entertaining, and downright hilarious.
#2: Dawn of the Dead (2003)
I cannot say enough about this movie. Watching it during my senior year of high school inspired my love of z-movies. This movie DOES NOT STOP; from the first twenty minutes until the awesome finale, it’s a non-stop zombie-killing joy ride. The soundtrack is probably the best soundtrack ever made for a Zombie movie (e.g. “When the Man Comes Around,” Johnny Cash); and the cast is awesome (e.g. Ving Rhames). Humor? What could be funnier that watching the protagonists playing a sniper game and naming targets by the celebrities they resemble?
#1: World War Z (TBA)
No, I have not seen this movie. No, it has not even begun production. BUT, the book was amazing; and I can promise you that with J. Michael Straczynski writing the screen play and Plan B producing, this will be the greatest z-movie of all time. IMDB
These movies are great, but I wanted to keep this post relatively short.
Shaun of the Dead, Army of Darkness, Night of the Living Dead (1968), Land of the Dead, Diary of the Dead, House of the Dead, Resident Evil: Apocalypse.