Co-written by George A. Romero and John Russo, and Directed by Romero, this bleak masterpiece of horror stars Duane Jones, Judith O’Dea, Karl Hardman, Marilyn Eastman, Keith Wayne, Judith Ridley and Bill Hinzman.
Trapped in a small town farmhouse, a bickering group of people struggles to survive a mysterious global outbreak in which the dead come back to life to feast on the living. The strain of basic survival in the face of murderous corpses is compounded by the group’s conflicting ideological beliefs.
This movie launched the modern zombie formula: slow, lumbering dead who crave human flesh and can only be killed with a shot or blow to the head that destroys the brain. Before this, films like White Zombie (1932) and I Walked with a Zombie (1943) focused on the voodoo concept of zombies and the simple horror of human corpses brought to life in the form of drooling, emotionless, inhuman slaves. In contrast, Night of the Living Dead, borrowing slightly from The Last Man on Earth (1964), established a new horror monster with its own iconic rules and tropes.
Infused with searing social commentary and an imperfect political subtext, Night of the Living Dead is a terrifying and brutal classic that I rate 9/10.
I hope you enjoyed the Halloween horror movie suggestions! Have a great Halloween!
And be sure to check out the other episodes in the series:
Episode #1 – Shivers (1975)
Episode #2 – Strange Behavior (1981)
Episode #3 – The Killer Shrews (1959)
Episode #4 – The Antichrist (1974)
Episode #5 – Don’t Panic (1988)
Episode #6 – Spider Baby (1968)
Episode #7 – Targets (1968)
Episode #8 – Feast (2005)
Episode #9 – The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971)
Please also take a minute to support my own horror movie: Eggs – A Horror Movie starring Lynn Lowry (Shivers, The Crazies, Cat People, etc.) and Duane Whitaker (Pulp Fiction, Feast, The Devil’s Rejects, Halloween 2, etc.), now funding on Kickstarter! As always, there’s a contest at the end of the video: Be the first person to make a pledge and leave a comment on Kickstarter with the correct answer to get a bonus prize added to your reward.
Ryan Stockstad is a Los Angeles filmmaker with a passion for horror, documentary and experimental cinema. He has written articles for HC Magazine, Mostly Harmless Magazine and various blogs and websites. He has lectured on topics as diverse as low budget filmmaking, short story structure, and the influence of the Spanish Civil War on surrealist cinema. He hosts new episodes of Pop Culture Beast's Halloween Horror Picks every Monday, Wednesday and Friday in October.