In collaboration with Exhumed Films:
George A. Romero’s Original DEAD Trilogy
Exhumed Films is proud to present a celebration of one of our favorite directors, the late, great George Romero. Romero forever changed cinema with his groundbreaking film NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, and continued to shock and satirize American society with the sequels DAWN OF THE DEAD and DAY OF THE DEAD. George Romero’s original DEAD trilogy stands as one of the greatest achievements in horror movie history, and all three films are presented here on the same bill for a rare theatrical event. Join us to honor the art and influence of one of the finest filmmakers in the history of genre cinema.
NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD
1968 / 35mm / Dir. George A. Romero / 96 minutes
When Romero and his partners at Image Ten Productions created a low budget horror movie originally titled NIGHT OF THE FLESH EATERS in 1967, they never could have imagined the impact that it would have on American culture. In the nearly fifty years since its release, NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD has been hailed as a cinema masterpiece, maintains a permanent place in the Museum of Modern Art, and has been interpreted as a critique of the Vietnam War, race relations in the United States, and the distrust of government fomenting in the 1960’s. But more important than any of that is the fact that George Romero and his co-screenwriters John Russo and Russ Streiner crafted one of the most terrifying stories of all time: a group of strangers find themselves huddled together for safety in an abandoned farmhouse as they are besieged by an army of undead creatures, hungry for human flesh. Although the relentless ghouls outside the house are a fearsome force to be reckoned with, the survivors soon realize that human paranoia and power struggles pose an even deadlier threat to their survival. Stark and still shocking decades after its initial release, NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD is a true benchmark in the realm of horror cinema.
DAWN OF THE DEAD
1978 / DCP / Dir. George A. Romero / 127 minutes
It is rare for a sequel to a monumental film to match or surpass its predecessor, but many would argue that Romero’s first follow-up to NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD is the standout of the series and the director’s finest feature overall. DAWN OF THE DEAD was a critical and box office sensation when it hit theaters, as critics were charmed by the film’s satirical content and warped sense of humor, and audiences were lured in by the promise of seeing “the most intensely shocking motion picture experience of all time.” Indeed, DAWN OF THE DEAD is one of the most gruesome and gory films ever made, thanks to phenomenal special effects work from frequent Romero collaborator Tom Savini. Like NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, DAWN OF THE DEAD centers on a group of individuals who take shelter from the zombie apocalypse, this time having our heroes holed up in a suburban shopping mall infested with cannibalistic corpses. The setting provides ample fodder for Romero to mock American consumerism, but any levity in the film is outweighed by the sobering portrayal of society on the brink of collapse. In a 21st century facing the reality of social, political, and ecological chaos on seemingly a daily basis, DAWN OF THE DEAD may serve as a depressingly accurate account of how humans respond
when things eventually fall apart.
DAY OF THE DEAD
1985 / 35mm / Dir. George A. Romero / 96 minutes
The third film in Romero’s original DEAD series is in many respects the most grim, disturbing, and claustrophobic of them all. Focusing on a team of scientists and military personnel who might well be the last living survivors in a world of the undead, DAY OF THE DEAD is a bleak look at how the fall of society leads to insanity and savagery. When the slightly unhinged scientist Doctor Logan suggests that the undead can possibly be trained and controlled, tensions between the soldiers and the scientific team they are supposed to be protecting reach a breaking point, setting the stage for a confrontation that could allow the zombies to get the upper-hand. Interestingly, Romero takes a drastically different approach for this film in that the most sympathetic character in the movie turns out to be “Bub,” one of Logan’s undead subjects who seems to retain some intelligence and memories from his previous human existence. DAY OF THE DEAD features over-the-top gore and fun performances, and is a solid conclusion the story that began with NIGHT and DAWN.
In addition to the feature films, our George Romero tribute screening will also feature classic horror movie trailers, special guests connected to the films, prize giveaways, a zombie costume contest, and more! Tickets are on sale now—be here on October 1 for one of the biggest film events of the fall!