In honor of the new movie, Zombieland, partly filmed here in Valdosta and coming into theaters this Friday, I was given the task of putting together a list of five of the scariest, bloodiest, and overall best zombie movies of all time. It wasn’t until I left class that I realized, I had never even seen a zombie movie in my life. So I devised a clever plan. I searched the internet and found over 20 lists, all claiming to have put together the perfect list of zombie movies. I picked five that showed up on every list, drove to the video store and rented them all. About ten hours, 4 bathroom breaks, and 2 bowls of popcorn later, I was able to put together my own list of the best zombie movies of all time. Enjoy!
5) Zombie Night
Zombie Night’s particular brand of zombies are the aftermath of the nuclear warfare of World War 3. A family of three arrives home from vacationing in a log cabin with no electricity to find the world has changed quite a bit since they left. They soon team up with a few survivors in an abandoned building and fight off zombies until the end.
Quite frankly, Zombie Night is a piece of garbage. TheInternet lists that included this movie forgot to mention that it was filmed in someone’s backyard with a cheap camcorder, random neighbors and a few bottles of ketchup. One could honestly think this movie was a joke, but it soon becomes clear that these bad actors are very serious. Not only are the actors fake, but so is the action. Instead of cowering in fear, you might find yourself laughing at each corn-syruped corpse that crosses the screen. It would probably be more entertaining to fight off a horde of zombies yourself than to sit through this 91 minute disaster.
4) Shaun of the Dead
This Edgar Wright zombie flick is a little unorthodox considering the fact that it’s an intentional comedy. All Shaun wants to do is get his girlfriend back, but unfortunately plans change when thousands of living dead show up. He now has show the world that he is worth something by saving all their lives from the flesh-eating monsters that have taken over London.
I’m not entirely sure this can even be classified as a zombie movie because it wasn’t a horror movie. I was prepared for millions of terrifying undead and instead got Shaun and his best friend Ed who are so stupid, they don’t even notice the zombies or destruction going on until one attacks them personally. Not that Shaun of the Dead isn’t entertaining. While this movie won’t have you cowering under the covers, it can be considered a pretty decent comedy.
3) (Remake) Night of the Living Dead
I wasn’t able to get my hands on the original, so this 1990 remake of George A. Romero’s classic would have to do. Zombies appear almost immediately when a brother and sister go to a graveyard (in the middle of the day) to visit their recently deceased mother. The sister survives the first attack only to find herself trapped in a house with six other strangers also fighting the living dead. All hell breaks loose however, when these strangers start to turn the guns on each other instead of their flesh-eating enemies.
While the special effects left much to be desired, Night of the Living Dead was a huge upgrade. The plot of this movie was simple–no one knew where the zombies were coming from, and no one cared. People just shot, killed, and moved on. Barbara, the heroine of the movie, is a very impressive character; changing from her long pleated skirt to men’s pants and army boots and killing anything that moves I recommend this movie to anyone looking for an old school action flick that won’t cause you to lose any sleep at night.
2) Day of the Dead
Day of the Dead is not your average zombie movie. Instead of running from the cannibalistic undead, this group of characters traps several of them in their underground shelter, and hand them over to Dr. Logan (a.k.a. Dr. Frankenstein) in an attempt to explain why it’s happening and how to stop it. The mad scientist actually manages to find a zombie, nicknamed Bub, with some human emotion left in him. But once again, the actual living turn against one another, resulting in a bloody last battle where it’s every man for himself.
This is a very rare thing–a scary movie with a decent plot. What Day of the Dead lacks in scenes designed to make you jump, it makes up in an actual storyline. People in this movie must defend themselves not only against zombies, but against the living as well, creating an intense and action packed 102 minutes for you to enjoy.
1) Dawn of the Dead
This 2004 remake of George Romero’s original brings a 21st century twist on the 1978 film. A handful of survivors close themselves off in the mall in an attempt to wait it out. But this plan fails when the zombies continue to multiply, so they plan a desperate escape in two battle vehicles they designed themselves.
Romero is quite obviously, hands down, the zombie movie king. While I can’t vouch for the original, this remake of Dawn of the Dead has something for everyone–amazing special effects, dark humor, a love story, and actual suspense all wrapped up into one great horror movie. This flick is the only one on the list that might have you calling your roommate to sleep in the same room as you.