Monday, January 25, 2010

A Few Thoughts on Dawn of the Dead (the Original)

Not a review, really; I have to go soon and can't really organize my thoughts. Anyway:

- A deceptively simple and effective opening credits sequence. It boils down to a lot of arguing in a news studio about the deteriorating zombie situation, but simply showing the impact the zombies have had on society is far more unsettling than showing the zombies themselves.
- I was surprised, given the movie's reputation, at how...tame... it was. Perhaps that's not the right word, but I went in expecting a gung-ho bloodbath, like, say, Aliens, but with the undead, but the majority of the film that takes place at the mall is devoted to what boils down to housekeeping--practical solutions for fortifying their location like blocking the entrances with semis, storing bodies in freezers--and other day-in-the-life activities (a dinner date, the furnishing of the safe room with a bed and lamps).
- This is much more interesting than simply lots of zombie cannon fodder shots and is why the movie is as well-regarded as it is. That said, the very late introduction of the biker gang seems like a last-minute attempt to resolve the "plot" as opposed to just letting the characters settle into the day-to-day.

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