Sunday, October 15, 2006

Dawn of the Dead: Unrated Director's Cut Review

Next on the list of zombie films I recently checked out is Dawn of the Dead: Unrated Director's Cut. A re-imagining of the classic from the '70's film of the same name, Dawn of the Dead: Unrated Director's Cut follows the story of several survivors of a global zombie outbreak as they take refuge in a shopping mall.

Overall, Dawn of the Dead: Unrated Director's Cut is one of the best zombie flicks that I've seen. The film is paced very well, and there's no time wasted in getting to the meat of things. The film's main character is Ana, a nurse, and while she wraps up a long work day you hear talk of a strange sickness aflicting people. There are also hints of radio broadcasts and news emergencies, however going about her day-to-day affairs, Ana ignores all of them.

Literally between the 5 to 10 minute mark of the film, the first zombies start to appear and all hell breaks loose. As Ana flees for her life, she ultimately encounters other survivors, and together they take refuge in a shopping mall.

Everyone of the survivors has a very human personality, and they all work together and clash with one another in a believable manner which helps heighten the film's empathy. You have the cop, the Best Buy salesman, some mall cops, a former criminal, a pregnant woman, etc. They all must come to terms with that fact that everyone they know is dead (or dead-ish) and that the world they knew is gone.

From an effects and make-up standpoint, everything is kept with traditional zombie flare. For the zombie's themselves, the make-up department went between 3 stages of zombies: fresh zombies who essentially look like emergency room patients, slightly decayed zombies, and finally full out rotting corpses.

The one change from traditional zombie tradition that I'm aware of is that the zombies are _fast_, and I mean they can really sprint after their intended prey. I suppose rigamortous isn't a big thing for these undead, however their speed helps add to their ferosity and a sense of suspense.

With that in mind, I didn't find Dawn of the Dead: Unrated Director's Cut to be overly scary, I actually found it to be more satirical and simply amusing. The film is still great fun though, however if you're hoping to be freaked out I wouldn't hold my breath.

Dawn of the Dead: Unrated Director's Cut is a great modern day zombie flick. It blends all it's different aspects well, as gore and satire are used to create an entertaining package that any horror fan shouldn't miss.

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