Sunday, July 15, 2007

Dawn of the Dead DVD

DVD Review by Kam Williams
Headline: New and Improved Remake of Zombie Classic Now Available in DVD

This apocalyptic screamfest not only eclipses the George Romero original but it even measures up well against the very best of the horror genre. A fairly-faithful remake, Dawn of the Dead follows the first's plotline, but employs A-list actors and state-of-the-arts special f/x, while relying on a script updated to take present-day mores into account.
The story is still essentially the desperate struggle for survival of a motley crew of frightened strangers, forced by dire circumstances to cooperate or perish. They take refuge inside of a mall, where they stave off a a race of resurrected, flesh-eating zombies.
The ensemble cast is comprised of recognizable archetypes. There's Ana (Sarah Polley), the cool, calm, collected nurse; Kenneth (Ving Rhames), the beefy, brave and burly cop; Andre (Mekhi Phifer), the street-wise ghetto gangsta'; Luda (Inna Korobkina) the expectant young wife; Michael (Jake Weber), the loser with a last chance to prove himself a hero; CJ (Michael Kelly); the itchy-fingered, mistrusting, mall security guard; Steve (Ty Burrell), the sarcastic wisecracker; Nicole (Lindy Booth), the altruistic animal lover; Andy (Bruce Bohne), the isolated loner; and so forth.
Their insatiable adversaries, meanwhile, are cannibalistic cadavers that crave flesh. The kicker is that anyone these zombies bite dies and comes back to life as a member of their ever-increasing army of the undead. And the only way to eliminate the creatures permanently is by either cremation or a bullet to the brain.
Dawn of the Dead puts the pedal to the metal from its unforgettably gruesome, terror-filled, roller coaster ride of an opening sequence clear through to its shocking conclusion. A relentlessly-harrowing, four-star horror flick, an experience guaranteed to induce nightmares.

Excellent (4 stars)
Rated R for pervasive, graphic and gory violence, very disturbing images, profanity, brief nudity and some sexuality.
DVD includes deleted scenes, a couple of commentaries, two bonus features and a featurette.

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