*RIP George Romero*

george-Romero

Not really an easy way to start this one, and I honestly never really write any kind of ‘In Memorium‘ posts….but this is for George FUCKING Romero.  So if anyone deserves a little of my horror sympathy and respect, it’s this man.

Anybody who knows me knows that I have pretty much been living and breathing horror since I was about 8-years-old.  But how did it start?  The simple, yet obvious, answer: George Romero.  I remember sitting in my Grandmother’s kitchen flipping through the channels (literally turning the dial, which is what you had to do back then) on her black and white TV.  And I stumbled upon an airing of Night Of The Living Dead.  I remember how much it stuck with me.  Not just the look of it, the characters, and the music – but the fact that zombies were mesmerizing.  Shortly after watching it, I also remember being back at my house and looking out my living room window constantly……looking for zombies.  I had nightmares.  A lot of nightmares.  But you know what?  I loved it.

When I was old enough, I was able to finally watch Dawn Of The Dead and Day Of The Dead.  Equally blown away as I was by it’s predecessor, George Romero was not only iconic for the introduction of ‘his’ zombies – but also for the social commentary strewn throughout his movies.  He took risks, and had his finger on the pulse of what was going on in the world around the time of all of his films.  These weren’t just zombie movies with guts and gore (although that was much appreciated) – they were zombie movies that were actually saying something.  Casting minorities into leading roles wasn’t necessarily the norm back then, especially in horror movies.  George paved the way, and even has had influence on films as recent as Jordan Peele’s 2017 hit Get Out.

We have lost a good one, people.  Not just a horror icon, but an icon in general.  Romero was set to produce an upcoming film titled Road Of The Dead, which at this point is probably the final project he was involved in.  The Walking Dead is a huge mainstream success – and if and when you watch it, think about the influence of George Romero. True fact:  George hated the ‘fast zombie’ craze.  So kudos to The Walking Dead for staying true to his original zombie traits (even though he had spoken out against the show).  Aside from Romero’s zombie films, he also directed the underrated vampire film Martin.  And don’t forget about Creepshow (an all-time fav), The Crazies, Monkey Shines, and The Dark Half.  He will always be remembered as ‘The Godfather Of Zombies’ though, so do yourself a favor and honor his memory by watching any or all of his films this week.  A true horror legend is gone, but never forgotten.

Monday Bloody Monday: ‘Helicopter Zombie Kill’ From ‘Dawn Of The Dead’ (1978)

Sometimes you have to go back to the classics.  And for me, one of my personal horror classics is the original Dawn Of The Dead.  Forget all of the social commentary though, let’s talk zombie death scenes!

On this edition of Monday Bloody Monday, I want to take a minute to bow our heads (slight pun there) to remember one of my favorite zombies from Dawn Of The Dead:  The abandoned hangar zombie.  He wasn’t with us very long, but what a memorable time he gave us while he was here.  If you needed proof that zombies aren’t too smart after they’re resurrected, look no further than this poor bastard walking literally into his own death.  At least that death was swift and quick by the hands of some merciless helicopter propellor blades.  As a bonus in the clip, you get to watch Peter (Ken Foree) mow down some zombie kids with a machine gun to some rather hilarious music!

Best Opening Horror Scenes Ever: Dawn Of The Dead (2004)

I remember back in 2004 when I begrudgingly went to the theater to see Zack Snyder’s Dawn Of The Dead remake.  I was timid….I was pessimistic….I was craving some movie theater popcorn with extra butter.  Now back in 2004, there hadn’t been a lot of horror remakes made yet.  So when I heard that my beloved 1978 version of Dawn Of The Dead was in fact being remade, I shuddered and threw something at my crappy laptop that I had at the time. And then I saw the opening sequence in the theater and much like The Grinch, my heart started to grow……

Love that aerial shot towards the end.  And you gotta love how Ana’s husband Luis is in full pursuit of her car, but then quickly veers off to the side to grab some lunch at the expense of a hapless neighbor.  Obviously, the biggest beef I did end up having with this movie was the debut of the sprinting zombies (28 Days Later had it, but at least it was explained there).  It just never really computes with me and I much prefer the slower brain dead version when I’m watching the walking dead in a horror film.

Oh – and one more beef was the character Nicole’s obsession with fucking Chips the dog.  Seriously?  Oh sure – it’s a cute dog, but when you’re in the midst of a zombie apocalypse, why in the fuck would you endanger your life and the lives of all of the other people to go and……..ok – I’m sorry I need to calm down.  That’s a sore subject with me and I’m obviously very passionate about it in a much unneeded and semi-disturbing way.  So yeah – hooray to the opening scene from the Dawn Of The Dead remake!  It almost made me forget about that stupid ass Chips the dog subplot.  Almost.

Ebay Find Of The Week: Authentic Bullet From ‘Dawn Of The Dead’ (1978)

If I could have any prop from George Romero’s 1978 flick Dawn Of The Dead, other than one of those delicious pies that were thrown in the faces of the zombies, it would have to be an actual bullet from a gun fired at one of those zombie faces.

$_57-1

Yeah!  Time to go buy a gun!  You know, just in case an actual zombie outbreak occurs.  But yes, up on Ebay right now is an actual bullet used in the filming of the original Dawn Of The Dead.  It’s certified by the Weapons Coordinator of the film, and also is signed by Clayton D. Hill who was an escalator zombie.  Not sure if that really sells the prop any faster, but hey – he was an escalator zombie!  Big plus for all of the escalator zombie enthusiasts out there.  Anyway, you can bid on the prop bullet HERE and it looks like you may be able to get it for a decent price since there are no bids yet.  I’ll still be waiting for one of those 37-year-old delicious pies to pop up for sale in the meantime.

Sunday Bloody Sunday: ‘Zombie Pie Fight’ From ‘Dawn Of The Dead’ (1978)

Every time I watch a new episode of The Walking Dead, I keep wondering when Rick and the crew are going to wise up and realize that whipped cream pies and seltzer water are the real weapons to use against zombies.  Swords and semi-automatic weapons are just for sissies.

On this week’s Sunday Bloody Sunday, I’m going back to a simpler time when zombies liked to hang out at shopping malls.  Yep, I’m talking about George Romero’s Dawn Of The Dead from the wonderful year of 1978.  Oh sure, it’s all fun and games at first for this biker gang led by make-up effects legend Tom Savini.  But these zombies can only take so many delicious sugary pies to the face before they make sure the bikers get their just desserts as well.  Bonus points there for my clever pun.  Enjoy the pre-biker gang slaughter below:

Ridiculous Horror Moments: Pie Faced Zombies!

Why are we worried about a future zombie apocalypse when all we need to do is shove some tasty pies in their face to stop them?  Yes……one of the most ridiculous and intentional “funny” moments ever in a horror movie has to be when Tom Savini and his biker gang thugs don’t feel any sense of danger from the zombies that are moping around the mall.

*isn’t it bad enough that JCPenny’s is closed?*

So, they run around messing with them and we wait for the Three Stooges to show up. At least they didn’t spray them with seltzer water – oh wait, they did. Do you think Zack Snyder is kicking himself for not including this in his remake?  You’re right – zombie baby was a much better addition.  Only question I have I guess is what kind of pies were they? Most likely banana cream or the delicious all whipped cream pie with no crust.  They could have at least given the zombies something good to taste, like blueberry or strawberry rhubarb.  So here’s to you George Romero, for injecting some delectable pies into your zombie movie and onto the zombies themselves!  Delicious!

*fuck my life*