Mike Damante" />
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Saturday, September 23, 2023


Diary of the Dead’ done to death

George Romero practically invented the genre of the American zombie movie, and with his latest film Diary of the Dead, he is killing it for good.

To say Romero lost a step is an understatement. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead were instant horror classics that transcended film with subtle takes on society and culture.

I was intrigued by Romero’s latest project upon first hearing the news of Diary of the Dead, and the fact that he was independently financing it. It is a zombie film shot in the style of a documentary, a la The Blair Witch Project. The premise is promising, but the finished product is 84 minutes of trite, cliched garbage.

It is almost like Romero purposely tried to parody his own films. None of the characters or their performances are memorable. As a viewer, I made no attachments whatsoever to the characters in the film.

All of the stereotypes are there – the drunken college professor, the Texas belle, the nerd, the Jesus freak, the militant black man and the struggling film student and his attention-starved girlfriend.

If you can look past the flaws, it is hard to ignore the shaky and nauseating camera work that makes Cloverfield feel like a carousel ride. And if the characters wanted to fend off the zombies, all they had to do was talk to them. The dialogue alone is enough to send the undead packing back to their dirt beds. Maybe I’ve seen too many horror movies, or maybe the script is brain-numbingly predictable.

The man who brought zombie horror to the mainstream attempted to bring some creativity to the formulaic zombie film with Diary of the Dead, but instead he recycled the same-old zombie that has been killed and brought back one too many times.

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