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  1. #16
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    PART I: THE 1968 CLASSIC - C2

    SOUNDTRACKS PART VI



    Here's a true oddity, not really a soundtrack, but I'm gonna allow it. In 2009 400 Lonely Things released "Tonight Of The Living Dead". It was by pure accident that I learned of it. This is a concept album based off the library music used for NOTLD. This CD was over a year in the making; pet project of 400 Lonely Things. A collage of treated audio from the horror classic. There is no dialog, just music and sound effects - remixed. The stuff is dark ambient, experimental music; sixty-five minutes.

    The twelve page booklet has a foreword from actress Judy O'Dea; who was given an advance copy. The album has four dedications. The imagery to O'Dea. Audio to the late Karl Hardman. Music box to Kyra Schon. And the concept album to George A. Romero. I'm glad I bought this; originally sold for $10.00, now it goes for $12.00 from Pimalia records.

    1. It Begins
    2. Tonight
    3. This Old House
    4. No Answer
    5. The Music Box
    6. Cricket Window
    7. Cellar Company
    8. Another Fire Always Smiles

    Wait, I'm not doing this justice. Here are two excerpt from the booklet:

    Using mutated samples from the film itself (many with their excellent foley work intact) as the only ingredients, and weaving these treatments into a subtle and creepy, dialog-free, instrumental companion.
    400 Lonely Things is Craig Varian.

    Tonight Of The Living Dead is concerned with the more understated and haunting moments of this movie, focusing on the fragility of "Barbra" and drawing out the sense of bewildering relentlessness and hypnotic inevitability of waiting in an old farm house for the world to end.


    In case you're curious, the album cover is a mixture of two frames from the film; the moment before Barbra runs inside the farm house. At first I thought that picture was something they snapped for the CD. Nope, two frames photoshopped together, looks creepy.

    There is a music video for "Tonight" - not on the CD. Go to YouTube, type in "Tonight Of The Living Dead by 400 Lonely Things" in search. Or if you know how, "E8vWbIQbyXw". It's still there (as of writing), checked. Uploaded on January 25th, 2010 by 400LonelyThings. The video is 9:14 minutes long, quite phantasmagorical.

    Continuing with the audio motif...

    They don't make enough of these nowadays - audio dramas, the Golden Age of radio. Wait, GOOD audio dramas. Granted there are a few going on right now, like "We're Alive" (2009 - 2014; awesome zombie series/podcast - seek it out).



    I still have this, bought back in the day from B. Dalton bookstore (long gone) in my local mall, "Night Of The Living Dead: A Fully Dramatized Tale Of Absolute Terror!" The cassette was released by Simon & Schuster under their Audioworks line in 1988 to cash in on NOTLD's 20th anniversary. It retailed for $9.95. I still have the folded single sheet catalog inside the cardboard case. Well... the cassette holder is plastic.

    There are three performers doing all the voices; Ed Bishop, Bill Hootkins and Linda Hayes. They needed either better voice talent OR more performers. The voices were not very different which can break a presentation like this. As you might expect, Hayes does all the female roles - all her voices sound the same. What makes it worse, Barbra now sounds like a cartoon character. *shakes head*

    Man, I have complaints about this adaptation, the voice actors leave a lot to be desired. The word 'cheesy' comes to mind. And the biggest bitch, they altered the ghouls. Zombies do not talk and they don't take breaks from hunting people. One of them rest after chasing Barbra; leans against a tree. Not joking.

    The revised story (fifty-three minutes) takes place in '88; Ronald Reagan is the President calling for calm as the plague escalates (bad Reagan impersonation too). All the characters sound weak.



    For collectors this is a curious piece of history, which is why I re-purchased it on CD. It was re-released on compact disc in 2004 also for $9.95 (you can find this cheaper on Ebay). Would I recommend this to non-die hards? HELL NO! This reworking suck balls then comes back for seconds. It could've been good - even great. What we got here is bad radio. Shame on you, M'Lou Zahner (executive producer) and Michael Brooks (audio adaptation), you're not fans.

    The CD has 22 tracks, the last one has fifteen seconds of silence. And the new cover sucks too! At least with the cassette they tired something different. The original release came with a cardboard slipcover which mirrored the jewel case art, not many CDs do that.

    Okay, the cover? Hands rise from the gave and hold on to? Is that suppose to be lightening as seen in the background? There is some kind of distortion in that sphere. Is it a metaphor? The dead eating the souls of the living? The cover makes no sense, just added frosting to this crap cake.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    PART IV: THE 1968 CLASSIC RELOADED - B

    BLUE CINEMA

    Nudies! You've been waiting for this mention. There have some parodies, but few XXX ones. I can name off the top of my head just two. Before you ask, sorry, both covers feature nudity so I won't post them. Just made you sad in the pants. It did me too, I had to read the detailed review for the one below.

    Released in April 2005 from Metro Studios under its Loaded Digital line was "Porn Of The Dead", directed by Rob Rotten.

    Oh man, this is messy and disgusting, take a real Hollywood zombie splatterfest then mix it with a porno. I'm glad I've never seen this. The stills were bad enough, gory sex. NO. I'll pass. There is no central plot, this is a gonzo release; five unrelated scenes featuring the undead with little to no dialog.

    There two scenes that I'm lightly going to mention as examples. Think oral sex, now make that member a bloody one. Take the reverse situation - now make that bloody too. Sick sad world, Daria. Sick, sad world.

    What I can tell you is that this DVD features an all death metal soundtrack (why of course), behind-the-scenes featurette (forty-eight minutes), trailers and slide show gallery. Audio is Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo. Retails for $25.99. The runtime is 101 minutes.

    This repulsion stars Sierra Sinn, Hillary Scott, Trina Michaels, Ruby Knox, Nikki Jett, Dirty Harry (not that one - Clint isn't that hard up; oh a double entendre), Alec Knight, Buster Good, Trent Tesoro, Joey Ray, Jenner, Rob Rotten and Johnny Thrust. As mentioned this is a Rotten film (another one - zing!).

    Let me make this crystal clear. Rotten is the kind of director that Christian groups rally against porn to, lumping his movies with the rest. The man makes extreme videos. Not the normal, happy-fun porn (Tori Black).

    The kind that very, very, very few people are into. The sick stuff as in this case; dismemberment, necrophilia and some serious religious blasphemy. Look, I'm an atheist and I'm offended. I put Rotten in the same camp as Rob Black. I don't need to explain him further than two words - "simulated rape". Stay away. It's a blight on the industry.

    Next up is "Night Of The Giving Head", released in October of 2008, a clever title from Exquisite; directed by Rodney Moore. Oh noes! I'm scarrred!!! Run for them there hills, Linda Lovelace has returned from the dead! *smiles*

    The runtime is 101 minutes too.

    This story driven blue movie stars Amber Rayne, Caroline Pierce, Nikki Rhodes, Rucca Page, Samantha Sin and Christian. The DVD has a slide show gallery, bloopers and making the soundtrack featurette; presentation in anamorphic widescreen. It retailed for $29.95.

    Due to Global Warming, holes are popping in the ozone layer. This environmental woe is making some semen wonky. Ladies who get *cough* a treat become effected. They crave non-stop man salsa. That the set-up; four girls are now trapped in a hilltop house with THEM lurking and horny outside. The horror! It's up to the local sheriff to save the day. Not gonna to leave you hanging (zing!), a cure is eventually found.

    I'm gonna guess... unaffected semen. Now you may be pointing, 'hey that's a plot hole'. Don't finger that, it's porno logic, it right up there with horse sense. Have I seen this? No, pass. I've seen stills, it looks very amateurish - like a bad high school play. Why see it when I can watch a better blue flick? Maybe something with Alexis Texas, Holly Michaels, Dana Dearmond or Gage (remember her?).
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 07:17 AM.

  2. #17
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    PART I: THE 1968 CLASSIC - C3

    Continuing...



    Okay there is this, not a video, not even adult - mature, yes. Published from 2007 - 2008 from Image Comics under their Crawl Space line was a four issue zombiesploitation mini-series called "XXXombies"...

    The year is 1977. Porn director Wong Hung Lau has two days to film on location, a house. He's under a lot of stress and debt. Hung Lau has locked his talent and crew inside to keep them from being distracted. You can pretty much guess what happens next.

    Things go bad as they find Los Angeles quarantined because of the undead plague. Things get worse, not so much from the zombies, but from Italian mobsters who have come to get their money owed from Hung Lau. More trouble and possible salvation comes from a pissed off dad of the one the girls; who is responsible for turning his princess into a whore???

    I do not own them, but these puppies are on my list.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    VARIOUS BITS

    Just gonna briefly mention this; the 1968 movie was presented in 3D on home video. But the print they used was not so great. The '68 movie was never in 3D, so the final effect is so-so at best.

    Released from Slingshot Entertainment on August 1st, 2004 was "The Ultimate 3D Horror Collection: Vol 2" - inside were two wired shutter glasses, the Video Synchronization Controller box and three (public domain) movies. The films (DVDs) were "Dementia 13" (1963), "Little Shop Of Horrors" (1960) and NOTLD. It originally sold for $99.99, now it can be found for $38.99. The 3D effects had some depth perception, but that's it. As you may have expected, I don't own this nor do I have interest in buying.

    - - -



    This is something I would love as a poster hanging on my wall. A tribute to artist Patrick Nagel by Matt Busch. The cover to the comic book annual #1, L.A. convention variant (250 at the convention; 1,500 copies for the reprint) from Avatar Press, 2008.

    How friggin' cool is that? If you grew up in the late 1970s and early '80s you've seen his work, Nagel. The man had the eye for the female form. His artwork has appeared on album covers and in Playboy plus many others. For some bizarre reason his art adorn hair and nail salons' windows. You've seen them.

    He died of a heart attack in his car in 1984; a bit of wicked irony, he died after making an appearance at an American Heart Association celebrity fund-raising event.



    Busch did second Nagel inspired cover, same comic book annual, but for the Wizard World, Philadelphia convention (same year). A limited edition of 1,500 copies. *sigh* I'll be honest, it didn't have the same umph as the West Coast cover.

    - - -

    There's a short (six minutes) out there called, "Night Of The Living Dead Mexicans" (2008), a parody. I would like to see that, couldn't be any worse than "Night Of The Living Bread" (1990).

    - - -

    April 25th, 1968

    What's that? The historic date, the date the world ended - the fall of mankind.

    Barbara: They ought to make the day the time changes the first day of summer.
    Johnny: What?
    Barbara: Well it's eight o' clock and it's still light.
    Johnny: A lot of good the extra daylight does us, you know we've still got a three hour drive back, we're not going to be home until after midnight.

    Taking the film's release 1968 as the event year; Spring Daylight Savings (gaining one hour) fell on the last Sunday of that April, the twenty-eighth. But why does it say 25th? Glad you asked.

    The whole ghastly story began developing two days ago with a report of a slaying of a family of seven in their rural home near Gallpark, Louisiana. Since then, reports of senseless killings began snowballing in a reign of terror which has hopscotched in an erratic disconnected pattern throughout much of the eastern and midwestern United States.
    - radio announcer

    The NOTLD take place on Day Three! It took three days for the virus to explode onto the populace; from outbreak to epidemic.

    And patient zero is from Louisiana.

    Nighttime's on fire
    We are the heat
    The flame is desire, burns in the street
    Know it's gonna strike, again and again
    Hold on to the Night, hold on till the end...
    - Johnny Steele

    Have we reached the half way point in these post?

    No, we haven't. I even bought a new one for a later review.

    Next Thursday I'm take a break from DVDs and focus on some relevant books, including a phantom novel!
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 08:10 AM.

  3. #18
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    PART IV: BOOKS - A

    As the title above indicates, this week I'm covering some of the relevant reading materials you might be interested in or had not heard of. This wasn't so much, something I intended to cover, but the more peripheral research was done - the more it became apparent that I should. So here we are!

    An importance notice; starting after the next post, this Retrospective goes monthly. I have so many titles to cover next year. I'll be honest - most of them are crap. And not the good kind.



    Lets begin at the start of the infection...

    I'm going to cover the various novelizations of the movie by screenplay co-writer John Russo.

    The text inside is the same with minor differences which I'll address.

    So take my hand and squeeze tight for... luck.



    The first book came out in 1974. This has an introduction by Romero as well as sixteen pages of photos from the movie. This sold from Warner Paperback Library.

    Back in early 1980s or late 1970s I HAD an opportunity to pick this up. But didn't, the paperback was priced fairly at $1.25. This was from Circle K or 7-11 can't recall which.

    I would still have that now if I had. Even as a little kid I had respect for books and took care of them. I still have novels bought in my childhood. Anyhow, this book is one hundred eighty-nine pages long (including that black and white galley).

    Of all the novelizations this one has my favorite cover, illustration by Paul Weller. Later on, there is a re-pressing with tries to replicate the art. Didn't quite hit the mark.

    Anyhow, the first pressing came with a full page ad for Kent cigarettes, just so you know.



    The second pressing (well more like third since Warner Paperback re-released, minus the ad) came out in 1981 from Pocket Books. There change (beyond the obvious), it is now one hundred seventy-six pages long and sold for $2.50. A gallery is included here - BUT the images are different. It appears the Romero introduction was not carried over.

    They are coming, filling the night with a furious howl, and staining the earth blood-red... their powers are swelling, from feasting on flesh and gnawing on bone, now they are drunk on the sweet taste of blood... and they march to the rhythm of death. Now they will crash down the gates, take all that is theirs, and wipe the blood from their lips...
    - rear text

    Pardon? They don't wipe. Nor howl.

    Don't like the artwork (which is indicative of that time), but I will say it's quite meta with the ghoul's hand ripping though the book itself to reach the girl - Barabra? You guess is as good as mine. Though you could say that it foretold the future; 1990's Barbara is a redhead. *Inception horn* Though 90's Barb is short haired.



    First off, let me apologize. I know it. You know it. That image is garbage. I used the best I could find and tried with great effort to make it passable. Nobody has a decent scan of it, all I could find were craptacular thumb size images and most of them were quite poor. This is far from decent, but you get the idea.

    This is the third pressing from New English Library Ltd. in the United Kingdom.

    It was released in 1983 and is one hundred seventy-six pages. No idea on price tag.

    A novel of terror by John Russo that became the classic film of terror by John Russo and George Romero
    - cover text

    The image feels a bit similar to the 1999 Columbia TriStar Home Video DVD cover. *nods*



    The fourth pressing... I guess is a collector's item; the Canadian paperback from Ravenmor Books (part of Commonwealth Pubns Inc.), released in 1996. This is one hundred eight-four pages. I don't believe the Romero introduction is included.

    Special?

    This was pure greed, wicked bosses who wanted all the maple for themselves, indeed.

    Ravenmor Books was sued into oblivion by their authors. Because? They didn't pay them - the publisher later went bankrupt. Anyhow, the price tag for this paperback is unknown.

    I'll give them credit for doing something new for the cover, they put some effort into that picture.



    This is what I talked about earlier. The fifth pressing came from Burning Bulb Publishing in 2014. One hundred ninty pages.

    It is priced at $9.99, a softback.

    As you can see the picture tires to recreate that mood set in the first pressing. The hand have the same color and texture as the board securing the broken window. It looks ugly and quite unappealing, at least for me.

    Plus the hands kinda look like chicken claws. Why is that? The Weller cover has the hands, window frame and lumber all in different hues (even the broken glass). They stand out from each other, not like this reimagined mesh (or mess).

    I'll take a pause and do an international edition.



    This ditty is from Spain, published by Martinez-Roca in 1985.

    Price is unknown, but it is one hundred fifty-nine pages long. More than likely zero gallery.

    TRUTH.

    I don't have a clue and am taking a lot of guess as to reissues. It's a quite a mess, the novel has be re-pressed so many times it's almost a cliché. The number is a mystery when you count the global editions.

    That being said. WTF?

    Is that suppose to be Helen Cooper as a ghost? She's transparent on that skull. It kinda looks like her. Was the candle on the skull added for a gothic flavor? And why is this taking place at the cemetery (background)? Hinting a voodoo ritual that brought the dead back to life?

    "Super Terror", I see. Okay I suppose.

    So many unanswered questions.



    Next is a new adaptation by Christopher Andrews from Rising Star Visionary Press in 2009. This is two hundred and six pages long and sold for $13.95. This softback is a book I want to own.

    The book addresses why Harry Cooper is such an asshole. And how Tom and Judy got to the farm house. How the Karen got bit and so on.

    We also get the horrors at Beekman's Diner witnessed by Ben.

    In short; we get back stories and a faithful novelization. The book has gotten many good reviews. This is on my list to own as is the 1974 novel. But Andrews cover is weak, the ghoul with the open maw - that looks like bad CGI given some texture.



    Gonna change gears for a moment and cover the first draft screenplay; "Night Of The Living Dead: A True Copy Of The Original Screenplay By John A. Russo & George A. Romero".

    This softback was released by CreateSpace Independent Publishing in 2012. And sells for $19.95. It is ninety-two pages long. This is a replica of the original script when it was called "The Anubis".

    Please Be Aware: There are places where the printed pages are not entirely legible due to the use of an old-fashioned inefficient mimeograph machine that we had in our offices back in 1967 when the script was first written. This does not mean that you have bought a defective copy; rest assured that you have gotten an honest replica of the script as it has always existed.
    - Russo's foreword

    I can't see myself owning this. This veers far too deep in novelty territory. I'm puzzled why they didn't enhance the pages to make them more legible; this act does not take away nor negate its content - at all. It just makes it much more readable. I've seen page samples, it needs it.

    Come back here on December 17th, 2015 for next part; yeah - in two weeks. Will it be worth the wait?

    How about the unpublished Romero novel detailing how the contagion began? That caught your attention?

    See you then.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 07:05 AM.

  4. #19
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    PART IV: BOOKS - A2

    Before we get into the meat of this post, I'm going to cover some other books.

    Yes, I'm being a stinker. *smile*

    Lets begins with studies.



    Released in 2008 from British Film Institute was the one hundred twenty-eight page reflection, "BFI: Film Classics - Night Of The Living Dead" by Ben Hervey.

    This paperback was written by a film historian who taught at Oxford and Reading Universities. It take the movie and breaks it down; from social commentary, politics of the day, morality, its reception and production history.

    A scholar taking a popular horror film and giving it academic substance.

    But is it pretentious? I hope not. This too is on my want list.

    British Film Institute has various books dedicated to various classic movies showcasing them in intellectual delights - dilettantes go home.

    This sold for $17.95.



    Next is something I desire to own, but not willing to shell out $125.00. Published by Centipede Press in 2011 is "Night Of The Living Dead: Studies In The Horror Film". This is three hundred sixty-eight pages long, a hardcover with decorative cloth cover.

    Editors Jerad Walters and Marco Lanzagorta collect eighteen essays covering various topics (on the first three 'dead' movies), color photos and two interviews with George A. Romero; from 1979 and 2006.

    This was limited to 200 copies worldwide.



    Both this and the BFI: Film Classics make a great companion to the DVD, "Birth Of The Living Dead", a documentary (2014).

    It will be covered next year.



    Next are three books - all the same thing, "The Complete Night Of The Living Dead Filmbook".

    Left to right...

    The first version was released by Harmony Books in 1985 for $12.95. The second was the re-pressing by the same publisher in 1986 (now with a crimson cover; gonna guess the same price). Both softback books are one hundred twenty pages long. This is a collection of stories and memorabilia - a scrapbook of sorts.

    It was also re-released again in 1989 by Harmony as a hardcover, not pictured; price unknown. But I would image the same page number.

    Since it was long out of print it was re-released in 2012 from CreateSpace Independent Publishing, now as one hundred thirty-eight pages for $14.96.

    I would like to own this, the 1985 version and maybe '86 too. The current re-release has a bland cover. I'll be honest covers do effect my purchases. Superficial? YES. Don't care, I like what I like.

    Man, I still remember seeing version two listed in old Star Tech catalogs. Somewhere around here I STILL have one from the 1980s. It was a fanboy's wet dream; a catalog with all sort of fandom merchandise. I recall it sold Doctor Who candy, jelly babies (Tom Baker era) imported from England. Never got to taste one. That's on my bucket list, don't judge.



    Next is a retrospective, "Night of the Living Dead: Behind The Scenes Of The Most Terrifying Zombie Movie Ever" by Joe Kane. The softback was published by Citadel in 2010 for $16.95. It's kinda on my list.

    This book covers all the stuff most NOTLD fans already know. How it was made; from script to screen and the Walter Reade Organization debacle. It's a lot of ground, but once again - this is stuff fans already know.

    Here's the thing. You can get the same experience from the documentary on the 40th Anniversary Edition DVD; "One For The Fire: The Legacy Of 'Night Of The Living Dead'".

    Your choice and green backs.

    Well it appears that Cohle is correct, "time is a flat circle" - what's old is new again. Back in July of 2014 I got lost online, nothing new. More like a stream of conscience kind of thing.



    I ran into this publication from The Creative Stock Market - "Night Of The Living Dead: 2014 Screenplay". The softcover book is ninety-four pages long and sells for $14.99.

    Barbara and her brother Johnny drive to the countryside to visit the gravestone of their late father when Johnny is brutally murdered by a mindless old man. The murderer then turns to Barbara who manages to hide in a small farmhouse where she meets Joe and a few others who are hiding from what appears to be an attack on the living. The dead keep coming back in a bloodthirsty lust for human flesh!

    This is a 2014 edition of the original screenplay written by George A. Romero and John A. Russo. It was rewritten, edited, modernized and formatted by Jimmy Edmonds.
    - press release

    The question is why present this work as a screenplay and not as regular novel? Hell, why not as a better audio dramatization than the 1988 Simon & Schuster production? I have no answer.

    I know you're curious, so here's an excerpt; the siblings at the cemetery, before madness bites...

    They start in his suggested direction. John is trying to catch up with Barbara.

    John: Why are you walking so fast?

    Barbara: (Looking ahead, trying to spot the gave) Hmmm?

    John: What's the hurry?

    Barbara: You've been bitching the whole way here about how this trip is a waste of time, and now that we're here, you walk like a snail.

    John: Whatever.

    Their jibes at each other are not really in anger, but are the typical of brother-sister annoyance. They walk through the row of gravestones in the growing darkness. Barbara pulls out her iPhone and uses it as a flashlight to read the names on the stones.
    Don't know how I should feel. Did somebody ask for it? Was Edmonds hoping that somebody might read his screenplay and buy the rights from him to shoot the movie?

    The last true modernization happened twenty-four years ago, the Savini remake.

    Wait!

    Ben was renamed 'Joe'? I hate when they do that. *sigh*

    Public domain image?



    That very same bloody hand image was used for another book, a zombie softcover novel; "Days With The Undead: Book One" by Julianne Snow from Sirens Call Publications. From 2012 for $12.99 (two hundred fifty-eight pages). Based on Ms. Snow's Canadian web serial of the same name; edited by Kate Monroe.

    By the way, Julianne Snow looks like Natalie Green (played by Mindy Cohn) from "The Facts Of Life" (1979). *shrugs*

    All right, you've been waiting for it. This was researched up and down and given a light tickle before presenting to you.

    There are contradictions and things that should not be, but are. If this was a hoax, it was a damn good one.

    It was reported in the Fall of 2009 that Headline, a United Kingdom publisher had paid George A. Romero, a rumored $300,000 advance to pen the book. At that time, the novel had a July 2010 release.

    It would have delved into the real reason how the plague started - more than a substantial hint(s). Plus rules, what the ghouls can and can not do; like - run. And the start of the crisis. The book's title was "The Living Dead".

    In San Diego, an autopsy seems routine until the corpse sits up and begins to walk - after all of his organs have been removed. Suddenly, the rules of this world have been rewritten and the dead now walk the earth. In Atlanta, a reporter covers the epidemic, showing viewers glimpses of increasing chaos from across the globe. Nowhere, it seems, is safe. The captain of an aircraft carrier hopes to save his crew from the disease by remaining at sea, but seemingly within moments zombies are wreaking havoc on the ship. THE LIVING DEAD follows different groups of people as they react to the crisis, working together or, for some, using their limited knowledge of zombies to try to survive. But is survival even possible? Or desirable?
    - Headline's book description
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 07:04 AM.

  5. #20
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    PART IV: BOOKS - A3

    Here another quote.

    [Zombies are] one of the new buzz words in publishing. I think that the world is ready to re-embrace the zombie culture - after the massive amount of vampire novels that have been published, it's time for a change of antagonist. We are very aware that there is going to be an explosion of zombie novels being published over the next year, but we absolutely believe that we have the definitive novel from the one author whom every fan of the genre will want to read. There is no one more qualified to write a zombie novel. You just have to look on the internet and around the world at the enthusiasm with which Romero, and zombies, are greeted, to see that there's a huge amount of potential for these books.
    - Headline publisher, Vicki Mellor on the deal

    This book seems to be structured like Max Brooks' novel "World War Z: An Oral History Of The Zombie War" (2006); vignettes in chronological order - told in first person. I highly recommend it.

    Brooks wrote what many (myself included) consider the definitive zombie apocalypse tale, that damn good. Please don't bother with the movie (2013), has next to nothing to do with the source book. There exist a better adaptation, a full cast audio production, like the golden age of radio.

    Also quite good. It exist in both abridge and unabridged CDs.



    The above image appeared on Amazon in the Spring of 2010. The page number was listed, three hundred twenty pages.

    Info was given about the audio book edition, unabridged for $29.98. During this time, the online retailer claimed the hardback would have a retail price of $25.99 with a release date of July 1st that year.

    The date came and went with zero novel materializing.



    The DVD release of his sequel for "Diary Of The Dead" (2007); "George A. Romero's Survival Of The Dead: Two-Disc Ultimate Undead Edition" (streeted on August 24th, 2010 with lenticular slipcover) has a statement from Romero in the special features. Asked about the novel, he remarked "don't believe everything you've heard".

    BUT there was that official announcement from Headline. And the detailed listing on Amazon. The book was reported in numerous websites including Dread Central.

    Later that Spring, Tower (the website is still alive, but Tower Records is dead) had an entry for it. Now called "The Living Dead: The Beginning" (NOT the comic of the same name) with an ISBN number of 0446561835. Different date though, July 24th, 2010.

    And that's where it should've ended, but like the zombies - rose back up.

    In December 2011 Allbookstore.com had a listing for July 2012 release with the same ISBN. The book now published by Grand Central Publishing (same number of pages, an American publisher). And Amazon revised it's audio book listing for July 1st, 2012 - still by Hachette Audio. WTF?

    The original book entry was removed and replaced with an "Unknown Binding" listing, going for $74.99 with a currently unavailable notice; "We don't know when or if this item will be back in stock." Confused?

    This is what I think happened; pure speculation.

    He did write most or perhaps completed the book (first draft). The deal with Headline turned sour. There may have been a silent legal battle over the rights. This was when Romero made his comment on the novel. He won or some agreement was reached. A new publisher was awarded the deal, Grand Central A revised date was given, July of 2012. But that too turned sour for one reason or another.

    Look that "Unknown Binding" book was real and did sell. Somebody out there bought that novel.

    Updating this research another twist surfaced. This time on Amazon United Kingdom website.

    Grand Central is coming out with the book (hardcover) in January 2016 - same ISBN number.

    Got curious and checked Wal-Mart's website; they're taking pre-orders! A list price of 25.99. The audio book retails for $18.96.

    Will it happen this time? But I suppose the all important question - is it any good? I suppose we'll find out next month.



    I'll end this entry with a bit of printed trivia. The November 2008 issue (there were different covers) of Empire magazine (British), published the results of a world-wide poll of the "500 Greatest Movies Of All Time"; "Night Of The Living Dead" (1968) ranked 397th.

    And that closes 2015. The next entry reaches for you with bloody fingers on January 14th, 2016.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 07:03 AM.

  6. #21
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    PART I: THE 1968 CLASSIC - D

    The first Winter of the new world, under an amber moon.

    A light frost cover the residential gravel. You stay quiet, eyes scanning, looking for even the most infinitesimal movement; your backpack nearly empty of food. It's time for another house raid. A hope for something more beyond unfed cans of third tier vegetables. But before you can enter the seemingly abandon home there's a rousing coming from within; that virgin ice beneath your feet - a double edge sword.

    And today, it heralds your presence. They too are hungry and not for canned goods.

    We kick off the New Year, not with a repurposed entry - no.

    But with a brand new write up which also happens to be an exclusive too.



    The release date is quite fuzzy - so I can't be explicit other than saying this came out in September 2015.

    There is an internet subscription, a monthly shipped, genre themed box from Nerd Block; $19.99 (with $9.95 shipping, USA).

    Horror Block contains licensed merchandise, hand-picked by our team of uber-nerds representing all genres from movies, television, video games, internet, and more! Each item is carefully selected and put through a series of in-house testing based on quality, brand association, collectability, and most important - fun factor.

    Working with some of the biggest brands in the business, Horror Block not only delivers on value but also rewards members with exclusive items found nowhere else! At Horror Block we live by our motto: Geek tested. Nerd approved.
    - Nerd Block website



    Images from the September '15 box.

    It came with an exclusive "Silence Of The Lambs" (1991) t-shirt; exclusive NOTLD DVD; October 2015 issue of Rue Morgue magazine (18th anniversary issue); exclusive "Horror Face Coaster Set" (a.k.a. paper masks you hang on your nose); exclusive "Night Of The Living Dead" word magnet set. And exclusive variant set of "Alien" (1979) figures (bloody Parker and bloody xenomorph) from Titan Vinyl; both are roughly three inches tall.

    A pretty good deal for twenty bucks (not including shipping).

    The DVD originally came with a transparent case. The wraparound is double sided, the inside shows a movie still of the ghouls coming to the house in red tint. There is no inserts nor slipcase.

    The motion picture is ninety-five minutes long.

    - - -

    Extra:

    * "Chronicles Of The Living Dead" documentary (anamorphic, 65:04 minutes)

    - - -

    Audio:

    * Dolby Digital 2.0 (mono)

    - - -

    NOTES/REVIEW

    There are no subtitles.

    The DVD is not dubbed in any language(s).

    My understanding is that this DVD is a Region 0 release.



    Above is a snap of the menu screen, bare bone options. The movie does have chapters, eleven of them.

    Let me take a step back before I get into the meat of this.

    In November of last year, I was goofing off on Ebay (my usual) and came across something I though was another bootleg - "Night Of The Living Dead" (1968). There are so many of them since the movie is in public domain. But looking at the image something grabbed my attention...

    "Includes Never Before Seen Exclusive Documentary, "Chronicles Of The Living Dead!""

    Pardon???

    In early December (2015) I bought a copy off Ebay, I think I got it for slightly more than five bucks. Once it arrived, began my quest - where did this came from?

    Could not find it on Amazon at the time. Some time later I found out why, it's part of a subscription box.

    Let me make this clear - the DVD is an official release, a limited edition - exclusive to this Block. I have zero idea how many were made. So don't ask.



    This movie is shown in window box format as seen above on my laptop. Why? That's a good question. No answer. It does however appear as full screen on my DVD player. *shrugs*

    What I can say is that picture quality is very good... too good.

    This looks looks like it was taken (minus window box) from Elite Entertainment's "Millennium Edition" DVD (2002).

    I can't be sure, but it's not some public domain print.

    So the main extra?

    This is good and quite a solid companion to "One For The Fire: The Legacy Of 'Night Of The Living Dead" from the 40th Anniversary Edition (2008) and "Birth Of The Living Dead" (2014) documentaries.

    What I liked a lot was the no bull ****, honesty. A great example...



    Everything with "Night Of The Living Dead", in one way it's like a millstone around our necks. And by ours, I mean me and Russ - 'cause we're the two trusties of the company. We've been with this since the beginning. And every single day there's something we have to deal with concerning "Night Of The Living Dead" and a lot of it is gut wrenching stuff; because somebody is pirating it, somebody is taking credit for the thing. Somebody I would say, if you have have any talent - make your own god damn movie and leave us alone will you. I don't abject if somebody does something original - more power to them, you know. If you can come up with a way to put ghouls or zombies in your movie and it works and is something new and unique, great. But don't go making your own "Night Of The Living Dead" or using our characters or our ideas, 'cause you're an asshole if you do that.
    - John A. Russo

    You can see on his face that he's angry when he said that.

    The opens with footage from today at "Evans City Cemetery" (Franklin Road, Evans City, PA [16033]); where the movie starts - comparing it with film footage.

    While "One For The Fire" focused on Romero, this is has its sights on the other people who made the movie, voices which were left out. Romero and actress Judith O' Dea appear in archive interview footage, briefly.

    It also shows producer/actor, Karl Hardman in that archive footage, but he doesn't say a word. Director of photography/actor/assistant camera, Bill Hinzman also appears in that footage and says only a few words.

    The Latent Image's TV commercial for Calgon detergent is here - the "Fantastic Voyage" (1966) parody ad. But the thing looks like it was take from YouTube; the quality is quite poor.

    This features interviews with producer/actor Russ Streiner (Johnny), co-writer/producer/actor John A. Russo (zombie killed with tire iron in farm house) and sound engineer Gary Streiner.

    It also has interviews with "The Dead Next Door" (1989) director J.R. Bookwalter, "Zombie Hunters: City Of The Dead" (2007) show, director Patrick Devaney and "The Living Dead Museum" owner/curator Kevin Kreiss.

    It's a slower pace account of how the movie came about, not a put down. The documentary doesn't feel it has filler.

    My grief is that so little of "The Living Dead Museum And Gift Shop" shown (Evans City, PA). How did that happen? They should have had much more footage of the place.

    The documentary presented in Dolby Digital 2.0 (mono), no subtitles with seven chapters.



    The hand of time. Above are two images of Russ Streiner from 1967 and 2015 (the doc was produced last year by Cinefantastique magazine).

    You imagine the actor will always look as he/she did when you saw the motion picture. Kinda like Anita Harder who played the Flower Girl in "Dracula" (1931), she's attractive (was twenty-five). This woman is long dead; passed away on January 15th, 1987 at eighty-one.

    And that feels weird.

    By the way in the behind-the-scenes pix, that's Romero with camera, holding the script.



    And another with Gary Streiner (striped shirt) and forty-eight years later.

    *nods* There you have it.

    Now you might be saying, 'who released this?' Damn good question. I don't know. It doesn't say. Could very well be Nerd Block; after all, it is their exclusive.

    A notice.

    The NOTLD Retrospective will now be monthly. I have enough reviews to last the whole year a bit beyond. No worries.

    The next update will drool on you on February 18th, 2016. By then I should have something on that Romero novel. See you then.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 06:45 AM.

  7. #22
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    PART II: THE REMAKES - C P1

    You run.

    Running faster than you have in your entire life. Up until now, you never had a reason to do so. But as much dust as your feet kick up, giving evidence of your flight - you are still being pursued. They; the undead, have no need for sleep or rest or develop leg cramps - ever persistent, patient and oh so hungry. Hungry. HUNGRY. Expensive name brand name sneakers or generics won't matter much now; how far can you go before YOU falter?

    This entry covers a prequel to a film previously mentioned in PART II: THE REMAKES - B, "Night Of The Living Dead 3D" (2006). I've place it here (this category) since it sort of fits.



    "Night Of The Living Dead: Re-Animation" did not have a theatrical run, though it did have a premiere on January 15th, 2012 at the L.A. 3D Club, obviously in Los Angeles.

    I have searched, can't find it, can not find a budget for this movie. I'm puzzled.



    It was released on home video on October 16th, 2012 from Screen Media (UPC# 8 14838 01270 4) for $24.98.

    The DVD streeted against "That's My Boy", "Chernobyl Diaries" and "Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted". It contained both the 2D and 3D versions. Presentation in anaglyph 3D; the release came with one pair of red/cyan glasses.

    There is no insert/booklet nor slipcover. The DVD has ten chapters.

    The motion picture is eighty-eight minutes long.

    - - -

    Extras:

    * "Night Of The Living Dead: Re-Animation - Behind The Scenes" featurette (anamorphic, 13:44 minutes)
    * "Night Of The Living Dead: Re-Animation - Producing Visual Effects In 3D" featurette (anamorphic, 5:12 minutes)
    * "Night Of The Living Dead: Re-Animation - Outtakes" (anamorphic, 3:32 minutes)
    * Home Video Ads: "Below Zero" (anamorphic, 2011) and "FDR: American Badass!" (anamorphic, 2012)
    * Web Ad: www.popcornflix.com (anamorphic, 2012)

    - - -

    Audio:

    * Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround

    - - -

    NOTES/REVIEW

    There are no subtitles

    The DVD is not dubbed in any language(s).

    The movie is presented in anamorphic widescreen; both 2D and 3D on the same side. The extras are identical, but for the 3D version option, the extras as shown in 3D (minus home video and web ads).

    The United Kingdom release (August 20th, 2012, £9.46 from 101 Films) has an additional extra; commentary with director/producer/co-writer Jeff Broadstreet, star Sarah Lieving and stereographer Andrew Parke. It's too bad this wasn't included on the region 1 release or have the commentary available as a downloadable podcast from their website. Oh and the U.K. release came with two pairs of 3D glasses. Joy.

    This was a hard to find at retailers title - nobody had it. I was expecting Wal-Mart to have it in store, nope. I ended up buying this from Amazon. Got a good deal on it, new.

    Was this movie needed? No, not really. Was it horrible? No, not really. Was it good? No, not really. This is a middle ground feature film. It's okay, but not much else. You got an afternoon with nothing to do, this could make a nice time waster. It's filler and doesn't rise above it. Which is okay, I guess. It could've been a whole lot worse.

    Once again Jeff Broadstreet returns from the '06 remake to direct and produce this direct to video sequel as does Robert Valding who penned that remake. The film takes place the day before the events of the 2006 movie, when the outbreak was still contained.

    I have a major pet peeve with connecting movies (sequels/prequels), one word - "continuity". And this flick really failed on that. Now I understand that star wouldn't be coming back and his role needs to be recast, that sucks, but I acknowledge it. The thing is try to get someone to look like the missing actor...



    The role of Gerald Tovar, Jr. "Junior" was originally played by actor Sid Haig (above left).

    The character was recast, now with Andrew Divoff as the perpetrator.



    Divoff looks NOTHING like Haig.

    That's a part of the problem, the other is mannerisms. Haig's Junior was somewhat indecisive and nervous. While Divoff plays the part with much confidence and planning. Haig's Junior was winging it. And that took me out of the movie.

    They're not the same man or an extension. Yes, it's nitpicking, but it's a legitimate gripe. Well, that and Junior in the oven room, near the end - his never needing to reload, magic shotgun.

    I guess morticians have access to special weaponry, you know... because of their occupation.



    Our main protagonist her is Cristie Forrest (Sarah Lieving) who just began her job at the mortuary. Much like Barbara 'Barb' (Brianna Brown) from the remake (above right), Cristie is a strong willed and an intelligent woman.

    She made a good heroine, that part I liked. I cared.



    I guess there is a second antagonist, but not so much - an antagonist to his brother, but not the overall story.

    Jeffrey Combs (of "Re-Animator" [1985] fame) plays Junior's sibling, Harold. His brother has fallen on hard times and is trying to get or scam money from his elder kin. When he finds out about the dead rising, he's trying to make the situation into a money making scheme.

    I did like the question Harold asked; 'are they slow for fast moving?' His plan never gets off the ground. By the way, the original subtitle for this movie was "Resurrection".



    Robin Sydney plays the goth chick, DyeAnne. She's a mortician working for Junior or rather was. She over-painted (face) on a client's departed loved one, her third strike. Cristie is DyeAnne's replacement. She must now familiarize the new girl with the mortuary.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 06:30 AM.

  8. #23
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    PART II: THE REMAKES - C P2



    I guess, the biggest, 'why' moment is the introduction of Sister Sara (Denice Duff), seen here with DyeAnne after getting bitten (yeah, that's a spoiler - like you're really concerned).

    Yes, that's a Sarah Palin clone. Why? I have no clear answer, than just because.

    Palin, I mean Sara is also on the movie's poster.



    I did like the couple of nods to the 2006 film, Gerald talks to his handyman Russell (Adam Chambers) and it is revealed that his slacker twin brother, Owen works at the Cooper farm. Chambers' played Owen in the remake (above right).

    To be honest, I didn't recognize him until that line was spoken.



    The other link being Francis Del Amo (played by the film's casting director [both movies], Mark Sikes). Sikes played the naked zombie eating a priest in the remake. We get to see him here alive with his wife, Honey (Rhonda Aldrich). That was a nice touch.

    Okay, let me re-address more problems with continuity...



    Just like the recast of Junior, this grabbed my attention, not in a good way. In the 2006 remake we learn at the son has kept his undead dad at the house (above left). For the prequel, they reintroduce the character. Gerald Tovar, Sr. looks NOTHING like he did in '06. I will say that the make-up job looks better here. Remember this is suppose to take place one day before the remake.

    That's a big disparage. Look, I know this is a movie, but certain rules must apply.

    C'mon, the father was shirtless in the remake and is now fully clothed and didn't have a mustache.

    The other is the Tovar home. The house presented in the prequel - also looks nothing like the '06 house. It's a different location. Why not just use footage from the remake with a tiny bridge like a porch set for the characters to walk in.



    A film like this depends on the effects in this case both practical and CGI. They work for the most part. Can't say it took me out, it was serviceable. I did enjoy looking at the special effects featurette; the CGI insertion of the cemetery in the back of Tovar's business. I knew it was CGI, but did not know to what extent until then. It works.

    Looking back at this prequel I can say I was entertained, it did it's job. Go in with low exceptions and some ninety minutes to kill, you'll have a decent horror flick. Like I wrote earlier, you could do a lot worse. Not a ringing endorsement, but *making an 'okay' gesture with hand*.

    In short, if you like the 2006 remake, you'll probably like this too. If not - stay away.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    SOUNDTRACK

    As far as I can tell, there hasn't been a soundtrack (physical or digital only) issued for this direct to video feature film. I can tell you that Jason Brandt reprises his job as composer from the '06 film. Anyhow, if this changes, a CD release - I'll keep you posted.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    ADDITIONAL NOTES

    I want to address this next, a quote from the rear of the case...

    On par with The Walking Dead.
    - from the Horror Chronicles

    WTF has that guy been smoking? This is nowhere as good as the AMC cable zombie series. To say that, is like demanding to get slapped in the face, by a gentlemen's club bouncer (a rather large fellow named 'Tiny') who's been having a real bad day. You just don't play with fire, dude. You just don't.

    Oh yeah, there is no stinger at end credits, a miss opportunity. To be honest, the 2006 remake feels like the better movie than this.

    - - -

    So? News???

    What of "The Living Dead: The Beginning", Romero's book?

    Take a guess.

    We're in February and squat, plus Wal-Mart pulled their listings for the novel and book on CD. Amazon, United Kingdom still has a listing that reads 'Jan 2016', but zero availablity.

    This title goes back in the casket, once again. If or when it pops up, I'll cover it. But I'm not holding my breath.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    JUST BECAUSE



    A behind-the-scenes snap from the 1968 original, chocolate syrup for blood (that's Romero with the can).

    The kids in the audience were stunned. There was almost complete silence. The movie had stopped being delightfully scary about halfway through, and had become unexpectedly terrifying. There was a little girl across the aisle from me, maybe nine years old, who was sitting very still in her seat and crying... It's hard to remember what sort of effect this movie might have had on you when you were six or seven. But try to remember. At that age, kids take the events on the screen seriously, and they identify fiercely with the hero. When the hero is killed, that's not an unhappy ending but a tragic one: Nobody got out alive. It's just over, that's all.
    - Roger Ebert (his 1968 movie review)

    Come back here on March 17th, 2016 for another entry. And yeah, it's real a stinker that wants to be meta so bad.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 06:27 AM.

  9. #24
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    PART III: ANTIPATHY - C

    There is a stench in the air.

    Foul.

    It's strong enough to be felt on the back of your throat - demanding your full attention; a harbinger of some thing very wrong and it's nearby...

    Back again this month with another title in its home video legion. And no Kiss Army will save your ass from the growing menace...



    This offering brings us a twist on the Romero fable in "Mimesis: Night Of The Living Dead".

    This 2011 film did not have a theatrical release, it did however have a run in the film festival circuit (and won some awards). It was made with a budget of $500,000 (estimated).

    There is no box office numbers, obviously and became a direct to home video title.



    It was released on February 12th, 2013 from Anchor Bay Entertainment (UPC# 0 13132 60074 1) for $26.98.

    The DVD streeted against "The Dead", "The Rum Diary" and "Dr. Seuss's The Lorax Deluxe Edition".

    It comes with a cardboard slipcover which mirrors the wraparound. There is no insert/booklet. The DVD has twelve chapters.

    The motion picture is ninety-five minutes long.

    - - -

    Extras:

    * Commentary: director/co-writer Douglas Schulze and co-writer Joshua Wagner

    - - -

    Audio:

    * Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround

    - - -

    NOTES/REVIEW

    There are subtitles in English and Spanish.

    The DVD is not dubbed in any language(s).

    It is presented in anamorphic widescreen.

    I picked up my copy from Target for $12.99 on release week.

    Let me give you a rundown first. What is this about? In short, it's mimesis; meaning - life imitating art. It's about jaded horror movie fans, taking role playing to the extreme.



    The film begins at a convention, Motor City Nightmares, a horror assembly. We are introduced to Duane (Allen Maldonado) and Russell (Taylor Piedmonte), friends. At the cafeteria they meet Judith (Lauren Mae Shafer), a goth girl who offers them an exclusive invitation to a convention after party.

    A shindig out in the sticks, next to farm house. Can you see where this is going?

    They do some drinking at the party and try to hook up, at least Duane does, and wake up the following day separated.



    Russell finds himself with a convention attendee, Karen (Jana Thompson) at a cemetery; nearby the house. Both have been stripped and redressed, now wearing the attire of Barbra and Johnny. There is no time to reflect as they are attacked by what appears to be a zombie - biting a chunk off Russell's neck. Karen flees, screaming - lots of screaming.

    Duane is stirred from his drugged slumber inside a pickup truck by her shriek. He too has been redressed as the character Ben. She tells him the improbable, Duane doesn't believe and leaves on foot to find his friend. He finds Russell near death and brings him to the house.



    From this point we meet the other victims; a group who were trapped in the basement. A family; Karl (Gavin Grazer), Marilyn (Carol Ilku) and their daughter Kyra (Bryana Dorfman). And one of the party goers, Keith (David G.B. Brown) along with Judith. All given a change of clothes; Karl as Harry Cooper, Marilyn as his wife Helen, Kyra as Karen and Keith as Tom.

    The odd person out is Judith who is still in her goth getup, unchanged. She is no Judy.

    Karl tries to leave and is halted by various ghouls outside. It is Keith who sees the situation for what it is, they're in a messed up version of the Romero classic. Things somewhat follows the events in the movie as more are killed and the group is attacked.

    And I'll stop here.

    You've probably noticed; each of the party is named after an actor from the 1968 movie. So what's the deal?

    As I wrote above, this is about deranged horror fans - who make their living putting together Halloween attractions, haunted houses and such. They've become so desensitized and want a real kick, a rush; using make-up and metal dentures to role play the undead - to murder.

    Yeah I know, I expect to see a young Tom Hanks wondering about in the background (go to IMDb, "Mazes And Monsters" [1982], you'll understand - I'm old enough to have see that when it first aired on CBS).

    This film's original title by the way was "Mimesis: Play Dead".



    There is a subplot I've left out. It's pretty weak involving a kidnapped, horror director, Alfonso Betz (Sid Haig). Oh yeah, Bill Hinzman has a cameo as... Police Lieutenant Bill Hinzman. His final acting role by the way.

    I did not keep this DVD, man I had buyer's remorse real quick.

    It's barely okay to watch, once (or maybe twice with the commentary), but that's about it. I just didn't care about any of the characters. It had well enough effects and the acting was passable. It's an original story, I'll give them that. But not all that great.

    There is even a nod to the Jeff Broadstreet remake, "Night Of The Living Dead 3D" (PART II: THE REMAKES - B, October 22nd, 2015) post.



    The gang manages to capture one of the non-zombies. A terrorizer named, Owen (Brian Matthew Richardson). Owen being the name a character (played by Adam Chambers, above right) from the 2006 remake; the Cooper family handyman.

    Anyhow, not helping is the commentary, it's bland as hell. I was looking at internet pixs while listening. I am a fan of Sara Jean Underwood. *nods* It's competent I guess, they talk about creating the film, yes. But there's something missing.

    The only good part.



    One bit took my interest - a haunting. They shot at an abandoned farm house that was supposedly haunted. One night during filming there was scream, they couldn't find the source, but caught it on audio. After filming the house was mysteriously burnt down. I would've loved to have heard more spooky production stories like that.

    Sadly, no.

    - - - - - - - - - -

    SOUNDTRACKS PART VII



    I have no intention to own this. There is a limited edition CD, "Mimesis: Night Of The Living Dead - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack". Released by Varése Sarabande (VSD-4214) on March 11th, 2013, only 1,000 copies produced. Music composed by Diego Navarro. This has a price tag of $15.98.

    - - -

    TRACKS

    1. Main Title
    2. The Farm
    3. Opening Titles
    4. Party At Night
    5. Zombie Attack (The Zombie Dance)
    6. Seriously Injured
    7. The Haunted House
    8. Evil Feelings
    9. A Horrible Feast
    10. Revealing The Truth
    11. Caught In The House
    12. The Plan
    13. Night Breakout
    14. There Is Nothing We Can Do
    15. They Are Coming
    16. The Renegade
    17. You Knew It All Along
    18. The Chase
    19. The Devil’s Kiss
    20. A Sad Ending
    21. The Movies Made Me Do It!

    - - -

    Just so you know, Motor City Nightmares is a real horror movie convention. Don't let this crap taint it.

    Come back here on April 14th, 2016 for another stinker - this time a genuine remake, a wanna be from the United Kingdom. You have been warned. And this will be a two parter.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-17-2017 at 06:11 AM.

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    PART II: THE REMAKES - D P1

    Songs in the air; birds are chirping and the rustling of animals in the woods - this should be the noise of comfort and joy, now an early alarm. It's Spring, life begins anew as it does for THEM. You awaken to such sounds, somewhat comfy in your hammock, suspended fifteen feet above the ground in a tree. Time to break camp and search the wilderness for more supplies. Then your heart stops... silence. What starts as low grumbling increases in volume. It's a flock of the undead moving below you. Your presence remains unnoticed. But for how long? All it takes is just one ghoul to look up and you'll be trapped. Doomed...

    Here's another for the bonfire. Once again its been recreated for our modern times, but not better or even lateral. No. Welcome to "Night Of The Living Dead: Resurrection".



    This did not have an American theatrical release, but it did have one in its native land, the United Kingdom on November 30th, 2012. Don't know their stats. I can tell you it was made for $20,000 (estimated). And that when it hit home video in the UK it raked number twenty-seven; May of this year.

    It was the only Top 40 title that particular week that wasn't made by us Yanks.

    That being said, this was a direct to home video release in the States.



    Released on April 30th, 2013 from Lions Gate Entertainment Inc. (UPC# 0 31398 16762 4 00) for $26.98.

    The DVD streeted against "The Guilt Trip", "WWE: The Best Of In Your House (Pay-Per-View Classics 1995 - 1999)" and "Silver Linings Playbook".

    The release came with no slipcover nor any kind of insert(s). The DVD has sixteen chapters.

    The motion picture is ninety minutes long.

    - - -

    Extras:

    * Commentary: director/co-writer/co-editor James Plumb, director of photography/co-editor/composer James Morrissey, first assistant director/still photographer Victoria Rodway and star Mel Stevens with sound man Paul Brookes (who doesn't talk on the commentary, he's recording)
    * Home Video Ads: "Night Of The Living Dead: Resurrection" (anamorphic, red band), "Descendants" (anamorphic, red band, 2008), "Dark Feed" (anamorphic, red band, 2013) and "Psychic Experiment" (anamorphic, red band, 2010)
    Web Ads: Fearnet.com (anamorphic) and ePix (anamorphic)

    - - -

    Audio:

    * Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround

    - - -

    NOTES/REVIEW

    There are subtitles in English and Spanish.

    The DVD is not dubbed in any language(s).

    It is presented in anamorphic widescreen.

    This was mentioned in passing in the March 20th, 2013 post. I had planned on buying it on release week and doing a review shortly thereafter. But I got burned with the last entry, "Mimesis: Night Of The Living Dead". I wasn't going to spend twenty bucks on a movie I might not want. So I waited until I found a price I liked. Last month I found it, slightly over five dollars - shipping included.

    So, what is this? This is a zombie movie set in West Wales, United Kingdom.

    It starts with the zed outbreak in full force; Ben (Sule Rimi) is driving on country roads (avoiding traffic and the undead) trying to pick up Barbara. Yes, they know each other here. He almost gets killed trying to siphon fuel from a discarded car. He fails and drives as far as his tank will take him.

    The vehicle conks out in the dead of night, leaving Ben to walk the rest of the way with an empty canister hoping to find more petrol. From here he finds the farmhouse in the sticks. And is promptly killed by the owner - shotgun to the face. Yes, that's a spoilers. I'm doing you a favor.

    On the commentary filmmakers said they wanted to do that since they knew they were going to be hated for remaking a beloved film; why not give them a real reason to hate? Boom!

    From that point on we follow the people inside the house.

    The father, Gerald (Terry Victor), his pregnant daughter Jennifer (Rose Granger) and her boyfriend Kevin (Lee Bane). Others in the house include Karen (Kathy Saxondale), the mom; Sam (Aaron Bell), Jennifer's brother, he's been bitten. A sibling, Mandy (Mel Stevens) and their senile grandfather, Bamps (he's been bitten too, don't tell anyone). Kevin and Mandy secretly had an affair - that was stupid. ALL affairs are secret, until exposed.

    Thing go quickly downhill once Sam turns and attacks Kevin (in their bathroom), biting him in the arm. You can pretty much guess what happens next.

    But the real danger comes from a group of violent teen scavengers (among the worst kind of violent scavengers); recording their carnage on smart phones. They arrive at the farmhouse for more than lighthearted tomfoolery.

    By dawn, only Karen and Mandy survive, another spoiler. But that number gets dropped to one and she's going to be put in the 'rape van'. I'm not joking, the other armed men who come after, actually said that.

    So I'm sitting here as I was watching it, wondering... why? Why was this even made? It makes me appreciate the Jeff Broadstreet production and even tolerate the "30th Anniversary" recut. Yeah. I'm so glad I only paid five bucks for this wannabe. Anymore would be a crime.

    Actual dialog:

    You cheated on my little girl with my OTHER little girl.
    Karen talking to Kevin, shotgun pointed at his head

    Every one of them is utterly disposable, I didn't give a crap, that and it's slow. I'm not bashing slow features - it can lead to some very great things/moments. Here; nothing happens for long stretches, just lots of banal chit chat. If the goal was to create a boring zombie movie... well done.

    This is pretty much "Night Of The Living Dead" in name only, much like the recent big screen adaptation, "World War Z" - which has NOTHING to do with the source, Max Brooks novel.

    Man, it's real toss up, which was worse; this or that "Zombieland" (2009) painfully unfunny parody, "Stripperland" (2011). Read more about that in the October 17th, 2012 Past Tense.



    Something good to say? Well, the zombie gore effects were decent enough. Tough, those fake contacts were a bit much.

    *weak half smile*

    Oh yeah, it looks like the dead girl on the poster is Mandy, maybe foreshadowing the events after the movie, that rape van - another spoiler.

    I wanna go back for a moment. Why is it that the DVD cover looks so generic? Looks like they found a bunch of stock images and photoshopped them together. Whatever. They could've at least made an effort to sell their crappy DVD.

    Lets wash away "Resurrection" with the '68 classic.

    I'll start with a story and work my way to it.

    I didn't see the original movie until my family bought a VCR back in 1985. NOTLD had aired on television as programing filler late at night - I was going to elementary then junior high, so I couldn't say stay up at those hours. So my very first exposure to it was from a children's' magazine that I flipped through at my local mall.

    It was inside a Woolworths - remember those? This would be around 1982. I want to say the magazine was called Popcorn or something the like, it had a stupid title. They had a piece on successful low budget movies and cited the Romero classic with a picture.



    I still remember the image all these years (that very pix). I was transfixed; the dead coming back to life, attacking the living? And what is that guy holding? The picture used was tiny inside the mag. This was at a time when home video was still in its infancy. If I wanted to see it, I would have to wait until it broadcast and hope that it would be at a time when I could watch. And that's where it was - until that video cassette recorder.

    We got a budget Magnavox VCR and a whole world of cinema opened before me. Well, I was still bound by money for rentals (we never had cable TV - I still don't have it), but I found a way around that (besides taping aired movies)... the local library. They had free one day borrows. Granted, a limited selection, maybe fifty titles - but that grew in time to well over a thousand video cassettes. Among them was "Night" and its sequel, "Dawn Of The Dead" (1978). This is how I witnessed the silver screen downfall of humanity. Man, I still remember those big clap shells.

    Since then I've seen the feature countless times. It's been a part of my life. And a topic among friends.

    Here's some good filler.

    Every once in a while something pops up that I never noticed or thought about before. It happened once again. A post on a different message board that started with "What exactly happened at Peteman's (sp) diner?" by Euro4569.

    I think all we can assume is that the diner was attacked and people were killed by zombies. Ben contradicts himself several times while he's telling Barbra about the incident, so all we really know is that he encountered some sort of traumatic scenario where people were being attacked and Ben managed to survive by escaping in the truck.
    GroovyDoom

    Followed by...
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-16-2017 at 07:58 AM.

  11. #26
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    PART II: THE REMAKES - D P2

    Ben was out of work, looking to score, decided to steal a pickup truck at a diner. While he was under the dash hotwiring it, he saw the burning truck coming so he "moved the pickup out of the way just to save it for the owner". So he hotwired it, stole it, and drove off to leave the real owners no escape and they all died... so he claimed the now ownerless truck. Listen to what he actually says and that's the real story you get from his words. No one "jumps into someone else's car "just to listen to the radio"".
    VartanD



    Have I looked at him wrong all these years?

    Decided to transcribe his dialog, not just retyping the subtitles; often not matching what is said. Subtitles were a guide, but not final word - I listened.

    Ben's Story...

    You know a place back down the road called Beakman's?

    Beakman's Diner?

    Anyhow, that's where I found that truck I have out there.

    There's a radio in the truck.

    I had jumped in to listen to it; when a big gasoline truck came screaming right across the road.

    Well, there must have been - ten, fifteen of those things chasing after it - and grabbing and holding on.

    Now I didn't see them at first.

    I could just see that the truck was moving in a funny way and those things were catching up to it.

    The truck went right across the road.

    I slammed on my breaks to keep it from hitting myself.

    It went right through the guardrail.

    I guess - I guess, the driver must have cut off the road - into that gas station by Beakman's Diner.

    It went right through the billboard, ripped over a gas pump and never stopped moving.

    By now it was like a moving bonfire.

    Didn't know if the truck was going to explode or what.

    I can still hear... the man screaming.

    These things just backing away from it.

    I looked back at the diner to see if - if there was anyone there who could help me.

    That was when I noticed that - the entire place had been encircled.

    There wasn't a sign of life left except... by now there was no more screams.

    I realize that - I was alone with fifty or sixty of those things just standing there staring at me.

    I - I started to drive. I... just plowed right through them. They didn't move, they didn't run or - just stood there staring at me.

    I just wanted to crush them.

    And they - scattered through the air like bugs.
    Ben's one sided conversation with Barbara as he reinforces the house.

    - - -

    I'm not that really used to the truck. I found it abandoned.
    Commenting to the group before the gas pump.

    - - -

    I see Ben as an honorable man, not without faults; low tolerance for BS.

    He's sympathetic (putting shoes on a dazed Barbara) and not afraid to ask to help (having a tough time driving the car, perhaps a stick shift). He gives people equal footing until it become apparent they're jerks (not treating Judy or Tom as a kids, which is what Harry's was doing).

    He's a thinker; plotting and enacting ways to secure the house and their escape to the shelter in Willard [Pennsylvania]; even igniting the fireplace - just in case they might come through the chimney. Setting the chair on fire to keep them at bay from the back door.

    Constantly brainstorming.

    And gets upset that the group stayed in the cellar, not helping a woman who was screaming; Barbara's 'lets get Johnny' episode.

    Chivalry.

    We luck into a safe place and you're tellin' us we gotta risk our lives just because somebody might need our help, huh?
    Harry Cooper

    Yeah, something like that.
    Ben

    Other part is responsibility. Never told Tom or even Harry to go to the gas pump while he stays behind. His plan - he'll go out, implement; whatever happens, will happen to him too - not passing the buck, speaks of his character.

    - - -

    Conjecture; his story to Barbara.

    The girl is in shock, catatonic; he's trying to talk to her, she's transfixed, staring up the stairs. He follows her gaze and goes up finding the remains of woman of the house. The sight threw the pieces of her mind. So Ben altered his story to save her from being further broken.

    Things WE know that they do not...

    The attackers are dead, not alive or insane. They are devouring their own - cannibalism, the living. These are not even being pondered. The first radio reports told of random mass murders committed by persons unknown. This isn't just at one burb, it's happening all over, not cloistered to any particular economic or racial area.

    Ben may have been looking for work (he said wasn't from around there), had gone walking to Beakman's; perhaps hoping to be a cook or busboy. I see him as a drifter, not a bad thing. He may have had a motel room outside of town, which could explain why he has nothing with him; no backpack or luggage.

    Sees cars racing by as he's walking. Odd. He gets there, but before going inside, hears the truck's radio - an emergency broadcast; keys still inside the car, engine running, door open. He hops inside to listen. Something yet unknown is happening and it's a serious call for alarm. 'Get to shelter NOW.'

    He leaves the car, thinking it would be a good idea to get out, perhaps hitching a ride with a owner. Once inside there isn't anybody alive. The undead have moved onto fresher prey. A bloody mess at Beakman's. As if the customers and staff were attacked by ferocious bears, all of them mauled. He doesn't stay long. Yells if anybody is alive. Silence. I don't expect him to explore the ghost restaurant.



    Earlier...

    The owner of that truck heard what was going on, went to the diner to pick up a loved one. And walked into a meat grinder. He's dead, whoever he was. Above pix is from the "30th Anniversary"; Beakman's waitress name Rosie (Heidi Hinzman). Needed an image to illustrated my point.

    At this time, Ben sees the tanker and the rest follows as said.

    He deliberately leaves out the diner; who would believe him? Blame him? He is Black after all and this was a time of intense prejudge. But it's the sight at the top of the stairs - this ISN'T isolated.

    When he told his story to Barbara, he was shaken up; more than just seeing the man burning in the cab - may have been thinking about what he saw in the diner.

    Another scenario:

    Ben's comment to the gang about the truck being abandoned. The car he drove to the farm may NOT be the same one from Beakman's. Still a drifter...

    Events follow as outlined, except no motel room. All worldly possessions are with him, satchel/pack - whatever. It accompanied him when he took the truck from the diner. Bad news, it was low on gas. He ditched that truck for another found on the side of the road - abandoned. There may have been a swarm of ghouls near it. Ben discard his stuff to save his life - why he was empty handed.

    - - -

    A quote from the NorWesCon 33 convention, 2010. A panel, "Zombies: Origin Of The Species" (April 3rd, '10) - what would've happened if Romero didn't make his classic?

    One of the things that, that none of them [iterations; remakes, plays, expanded version] did was touch the same raw nerve that "Night Of The Living Dead" [1968] did. And you’ll get what I mean by that when I say, that you might be able to touch that same raw nerve with a remake today if the lead character was flagrantly gay. Because at the time that movie came out - the horror was not, was not just the dead were eating the living, the horror was a world turned upside down; the power structures, turned upside down.

    For a Black man to be in control of that situation was touching a thread of sociology horror in America, that is very difficult for people to who do not remember what was going on in that period of American history. Touch. The only thing that would be even be roughly analogous to that would be the current struggle for gay rights.

    And so you might be able to create that same kind of unconscience, ‘I don’t like what I’m seeing and I don’t know exactly why I don’t like it’ feeling that was feeding into the horror. ‘Cause horror’s gonna be; not just fear of an unclean death, but fear of the normal becoming un-normal.
    Steven Barnes

    - - -



    Transcribing; somethings I've missed for years.

    Mayors of Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Miami, along with the governors of several eastern and midwestern states have indicated that the National Guard may be mobilized at any moment, but that has not happened as yet.
    - radio announcer

    Miami? "Day Of The Dead" (1985) takes place in Florida.

    By the way, that was filmed - the opening in Fort Myers, FL.

    The other is a time line; I was under the belief for DECADES the situation was Day One. It's not.

    The whole ghastly story began developing two days ago with a report of a slaying of a family of seven in their rural home near Gallpark, Louisiana. Since then, reports of senseless killings began snowballing in a reign of terror which has hopscotched in an erratic disconnected pattern throughout much of the eastern and midwestern United States.
    - radio announcer

    Movie take place on Day Three! Three days for the virus to explode onto the populace, from outbreak to epidemic.

    Come back here on May 19th, 2016 for roundabout documentary.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 07-17-2017 at 05:31 AM.

  12. #27
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    PART I: THE 1968 CLASSIC - E P1

    The bottle is nearly gone, few random drops of generic whiskey remain. Not much of anything than a reminder of what once was - phantom scent. But the glass container has weight, enough to chuck onto a nearby wall for a distraction.

    There are two of them; slow moving, decayed and alone. Might be a great day for you.

    They linger about in front of a former convenience store. One is slender, the other is portly and shorter of the two; both are dressed in torn, long bloodied black outfits with ratty baseball caps. The tall one gnaws at the air, making light moans, the other is silent. You think for a moment - about your own body odor, but you know it's not you. The breeze is blowing your whiff away from them.

    The store appears to be intact; no broken glass or scattered merchandise on the asphalt. The same for the adjacent video store. You've been scooping this place for the past two days; minus those nerderwells, seems secure. And potentially still stocked - the hope.

    In position to throw the whiskey. You pull out your wooden bat, heart racing - the bottle flies to the back of the video shop.

    The dead hear the shattered noise and wonder onto its general direction. The store's front is available, you already have your latex gloves on. One of the smart decisions you've made since the calamity; you've seen first hand what happens when touching something potentially smeared with infected blood. A simple thing as grabbing bags of disposable gloves from a dollar store; save yourself a bullet to the brain.

    Dash begins.



    You do your best to remain as quiet as possible without much huffing. The spot is reached and quick examine of the glass door - since your stakeout, you have not seen or heard any movement inside. You pull, but nothing happens. You pull once more - the door is locked and is making noises as you rattle in frustration.

    There is a moan; the thin one has come around the corner; there is more shuffling heard, the large one is trailing. The bat is in your hand, two quick moves and be done with them. Just then - a partially eaten face slams against the door from within, knocking a box of beef jerky from the nearby counter. He's missing half his mustache and part of a goatee. You can see his throat has been torn open, no moans from him, just the sounds of teeth grinding against the glass. The dead duo is moving closer.

    A lost cause.

    There is a deep sigh as you flee. You stop for a moment to see if you're being followed, nothing. Confused you slowly walk back the store. The duo is back in the front, doing... nothing. The thin is is gnawing at the air once more, the portly fellow besides. They've lost interest in you, once you were out of sight. A fragment of memory linking them to this place? Oh well. At least you're safe. You pull out your county map and see what is best described as a dirt mall on the other side of town.

    You might have better luck there.



    This time we have a documentary. Now some may ask 'why another?' A valid question. But before we get into that, lets address the stats for "Birth Of The Living Dead".

    This chronicle had a very limited theatrical run in Los Angeles, CA (October 18th, 2013) and New York, NY (November 6th, 2013). It grossed close to 5 thousand during its screenings. You can pretty much say this was a direct to video release. Sorry, do not know much much it cost to produce.

    This was originally titled "Year Of The Living Dead".



    Released on January 7th, 2014 from First Run Features (UPC# 7 20229 91580 9) for $24.95.

    The DVD streeted against "The Following: The Complete First Season", "Archer: The Complete Fourth Season" and "Thanks For Sharing".

    The release came with no slipcover nor any kind of insert(s). It has ten chapters.

    The motion picture is seventy-six minutes long.

    - - -

    Extras:

    * Extended interview with George A. Romero (December 2006, anamorphic, 32:44 minutes)
    * Romero At New York's Museum Of Modern Art June 16th, 1970 (audio only from the after screening with Gary Pullin art from the doc, 9:39 minutes)
    * Bill Hinzman and the world-breaking "Monroeville Zombie Walk"; October 28th, 2007 Pittsburgh, PA (1,124 participants, anamorphic, 7:08 minutes)
    * Additional Trailers: "The Pleasure Of Being Out Of Step" (anamorphic, 2013), "Far Out Isn't Far Enough: The Tomi Ungerer Story" (anamorphic, 2012), "In Search Of Blind Joe Death: The Saga Of John Fahey" (anamorphic, 2013) and "Happy House" (anamorphic, 2013)
    * First Run Features bio with web link

    - - -

    Audio:

    * Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround
    * Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo

    - - -

    NOTES/REVIEW

    There are no subtitles, though the back indicates there should be.

    The DVD is not dubbed in any language(s).

    It is presented in anamorphic widescreen.

    The documentary isn't shy; it uses graphic stills along with footage of violence and death from the Vietnam war as well as the race conflicts at home to illustrate the era. Which I suppose was off putting for some. Man, this is quite polarizing.

    I loved it by the way.



    The documentary on 40th Anniversary release; "One For The Fire: The Legacy Of 'Night Of The Living Dead'" is ALL about the filming and its copy right history. That info got expanded on the doc, "Chronicles Of The Living Dead" included in the Nerd Block exclusive DVD for Night Of The Living Dead 1968 (a previous retrospective entry).

    "Birth Of The Living Dead" isn't so much about the making as the environment which brought about the horror classic. America as it was in 1967, when filming began - the headline making events.

    The subject wasn't made clear enough on the wraparound, some felt cheated.

    By the way, scenes from the movie is from the remastered edition, though it begins with footage from a scratchy print trailer.

    Something I didn't know - the "Mr. Roger" connection. Romero did a couple of shorts for the long running PBS series (1968 - 2001), "Things That Feel Soft" and "Mr. Roger's Gets A Tonsillectomy". Wow.

    Oh god, 'Won't you be MY neighbor?... Why there's a knock at the door. Lets go see who it is. Why it's Mr. McFeely. Are you all right? Is that blood on your chin? *lunges forward* *screams* Trolley help!!! Get me my sniper rife!'

    Lady Elaine locks up the castle and goes into the fetal position. The Purple Panda People is seen by everyone now and are getting gutted by the zombified Prince Tuesday and Betty. King Friday starts killing random staff, believing everyone is infected - including Henrietta. 'Meow-Meow MEOW!'

    I'm not right in the head.

    *smile*

    Let me take a step back. This write-up is gonna be heavy on quotes.

    I became aware of this documentary in October of 2013 from Ain't It Cool News, they showed the trailer. I was quite curious, then silence. Then in December, reading in a home video trade publication, learned of its release.

    Bought this on February 28th, 2014. It arrived on March 7th from a seller on Amazon; paid fourteen bucks plus shipping.

    Okay back to the subject.

    Before "Night Of The Living Dead" there were movies like "I Walked With A Zombie" [1943], they were sort of the tribal characters, very different. Now arguably the 'zombie' is as important as the werewolf, but right below the vampire. Is probably the most important horror monster in the history of scary movies. All of these zombies, all go back to Romero. There is no movie director that's responsible for the vampire. There is no movie director that's responsible for Frankenstein. There is no movie director that's responsible for the werewolf. There's people who have made key movies, but those are much older characters which have this kind of literary pedigree. And while there have been undead and zombies, et cetera - what we know of as a zombie; the kind of 'it's alive' moment of it was 1968, George Romero in "Night Of The Living Dead" in Pittsburgh.
    - Jason Zinoman (The New York Times critic)

    This fact is missing on so many viewers, especially the younger ones.

    The concept; the undead feasting on the living, cannibalizing - is something that only came into being in '68. There was no prescient in books or film before that. Romero created something so horrific; an original, not voodoo based. Your foe is your mom, it's your sibling, your spouse, your lover (I've said that before). To quote the tag line from another zombie movie, "Resident Evil" (2002) - "Nobody is immune".

    This film and the structure, the morality - who lives and who dies? It's not based on whither you're a good person, whither you work hard or fight hard.
    - Larry Fessender (filmmaker)



    Rich, poor, old or young; the zombie apocalypse was the global equalizer. None of that stuff mattered, just your wits and cooperation. That's it. How will you behave? Be like the Coopers - bicker till it kills you?
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-16-2017 at 07:38 AM.

  13. #28
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    PART I: THE 1968 CLASSIC - E P2

    Man, it hadn't occurred to me until I heard this.

    It felt like such a modern movie in that obviously it was never remarked upon that he was Black. Nobody said anything about it, the way it did in other movies. And you keep in mind, this is a time when a hugely popular TV show, "The Andy Griffith Show" [CBS], taking place in the South. And there were no Black people in it. So to have this mainstream culture refuse to acknowledge any kind of Black catalyst and have it there and not be remarked upon - it really felt like a brand new day.
    - Elvis Mitchell (film critic)

    I was never interested in the show, even as a kid. I couldn't put accurate words then - I can now.

    "The Andy Griffith Show" embodied all the elements of banality and lacked any kind of teeth/edge. I can understand what pooled viewers each week, they wanted that kind of fantasy 'White Male' utopia. But as the saying goes, cuteness has the power to both attract and repel.

    For this subject, I am definitely the latter.

    I can say that I only watched a couple episodes. The one that stands out, made me furious - "Howard's New Life" (December 18th, 1967).

    The character, Howard Sprague (Jack Dodson), county clerk wants to experience a better life; out of his daily rut and leaves Mayberry for a tropical paradise in the Caribbean. Once there he finds things are the same just a different location. He returns home defeated and begs for his old job back. The lesson; you should know your place, be content as a drone. It PISSED ME OFF!

    There should've been a plan, not just arrive and expect all his baggage to unfurl. Man, I dislike that series. Such a vanilla existence without any spice or conflict; not such that it's in your face; screaming and fighting, but rather light discord. People should not agree on everything, that breeds conformity and worse - intolerance to those who think different.



    Particularly when you saw the vigilantes getting prepared and stuff; made me think of the stuff I would see on the television stuff, the Newark Riots - of Watts - it was all happening then. You saw National Guard on the street. You saw looting and stuff. So it all was reminiscent of that stuff. I mean, it was obviously of those times.
    - Sam Pollard (Professor, NYU Film)

    Another good example; controversy over an NBC special that aired in prime time on April 2nd, 1968...

    We had Petula Clark who is the top British singer at the time and they had a number together. And at one point towards the end Harry [Belafonte] links arms with Petula and they sing the final verse. And we finished dressed rehearsals and the man in charge of advertising for Chrysler said 'Belafonte can not touch Petula Clark'. And we were sort of in shock. And Belafonte said 'I'm not sure I understood you, what are you saying?' He said 'there will be no touching of Ms. Clark, remember we have to sell cars in the South'. And Harry said 'Give me just a minute'. And he call the president of Chrysler. And he said, 'You should know I'm calling a press conference in ten minutes to say that Chrysler will not allow me to touch Petula Clark'. We went into airtime, the taping - Harry and Petula linked arms. But that was not unusual, that was the atmosphere of the time.
    - Chiz Schultz (film and television producer)

    That is so weird, but was a thing then. And to a certain extent is still alive. I'm still trying to get my mom to stop calling children she sees, 'pickaninnies'. There is no malice here, it's just her default word for kids, all kids. She's seventy-three. So far, so far, I've been lucky. But one of these days there's going to be a fight with some stranger in public. *deep sigh*

    That will be a nightmare. My mom by the way is Mexican-American.

    - - -

    This is something cool. During the '70 Q&A portion of the New York screening, someone asks about the NOTLD's alternate endings. Romero answers...

    1) Ben lives. The posse comes around, Ben walks out to the men and says, 'It's been a rough night'.
    2) Ben and Barbara survive the night.

    Too bad all that footage and other deleted scenes were lost to a flood. The trims were stored in a basement of The Latent Image offices. It got filled with water during a particularly bad storm, as mentioned in a previous entry.

    This is a great doc on the U.S. of the late 1960s, but "Birth" give us a long sought after answer...



    God changed the rules. You know, that's the only explanation that I need. No more room in Hell. Doesn't matter to me. [laughs] It's happening and it's probably at least in my mythologically, it's probably some sort of permanent condition - I don't know. Unless we redeem ourselves somehow.
    - Romero

    About as good of an answer as we're ever gonna get.

    The negative? All the portions involving the elementary school kids' film class (Christopher Cruz, teacher). That had NOTHING to do with the subject matter. It was unadulterated filler. Just cut that crap out. What I would've liked to have seen in its place is an interview with Max Brooks. His feelings on the film. He made his name for himself from the Romero genre. That would've been interesting.

    While I may be in the minority; I'm a fan of "Diary Of The Dead" (2007). It was nice to see behind-the-scenes footage in the extended Romero interview. It features actress Michelle Morgan. I like her.

    There was an inside joke; didn't get until now.



    In "Diary", student filmmakers are shooting a Mummy movie. Romero in the 1990s was in development for Universal to fashion a remake of "The Mummy" (1932), things kept getting in the way. It did get green lit by the studio (starring Brendan Fraser, 1999) without Romero attached. In "Diary" the students are making the movie he wanted to do a decade earlier. That's pretty sway.

    Above; actress Amy Lalonde as Tracy Thurman, she looks like Jaime Pressly in the pix. And Philip Riccio as the undead, bandaged Egyptian.

    - - -

    This was something that I noticed while researching.



    Kinda surprised I didn't make the connection earlier. The cover for "Severed: Forest Of The Dead" (2005) is very similar to NOTLD 1990 DVD art.

    As they say, imitation is...

    Want more?

    There is another rumblings afoot. *nods*

    As you've read on this thread, things won't stay buried, not for very long anyway.



    In 2014 it was announced that "Night Of The Living Dead: Genesis" was coming out from Rough Cut Films (now called V2Pictures). It later had a 2015 release. Then squat, silence. 2016 poster shown above.

    What is it?

    The movie covers the events before the farmhouse with a younger actress playing Barbra (Addy Miller), the events at the doomed rural shelter with the Coopers and the events after the posse finds the house. Making this movie a prequel, remake and sequel all wrapped into one.

    But will it be any good? We can only wait to see... and hope.

    The cast includes Mike Lord Sr. as Ben Jones, David S. Witt as Harold Cooper, Flavia Ruffner as Helen Marie Cooper, Brenleigh Rigsbee as Karen Lynn Cooper, Cyrus Samson as Tom Cordell, Christy Johnson as Judy Hartley and David Crawford as Sheriff Connor McClellan. Score by Waylon K. Smith.

    So what's the main hook???



    The film has Judith O'Dea reprising her role of Barbra, now older (above). Color me, quite curious. It's directed by Matt Cloude who co-wrote it with William G. Smith. What I can't tell you, is this is set in the same time period or the present?

    "Night Of The Living Dead: Genesis" has a release date of December 30th, 2016.

    Not set in stone, that date could be later or sooner.

    - - -

    A photo from January 28th, 1971...



    Above, famous boxer, Muhammad Ali looking ghoulish; outside Joe Frazier's gym in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The two were preparing for a fight at New York's Madison Square Garden in March of that year.

    The barred windows would keep the dead out. I can imagine Ali making light moans and clawing the window.

    And with that, another entry comes to a close.

    But one more quote from the documentary.

    The image of the zombie in the cemetery is a key image; we all felt was so iconic and we patterned our zombies for the series, "The Walking Dead" after that zombie. We patterned both in terms of his kind of gait, his speed. Not only is it creepy, but it just seems like its unrelenting. You know he's not gonna stop.
    - Gale Anne Hurd (executive producer, "The Walking Dead")

    Seek this out, its a great slice of horror history.

    Come back here on June 16th, 2016 for...

    This could've rocked, but was so badly handled, the final result is crap on a cracker - convention footage.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-16-2017 at 07:26 AM.

  14. #29
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    PART I: THE 1968 CLASSIC - F P1

    This used to carry the sounds of playing children; joys and pleasant memories. Those days have been replaced with the Reaper's own gothic angels who have painted the world with screams and sorrows. But for now this kindergarten is your haven.

    Raiders hadn't thought about coming here for supplies. You DID. And was rewarded with canned food and a cornucopia of small bags of various chips and snacks, not to mention tons of boxed juice. You have puzzles to assemble, books that need coloring, and Legos that need building. It's not bad, life is okay. But those pleasantries come to a halt... a low moan is heard.

    This most definitely wasn't your stomach. The question; did that noise come from outside or within the building? Life might not be okay today.

    *deep sigh*

    I took a bullet for you guys.

    This update features the worst, crap on a cracker I've seen in a long time. Man, I lost hours off my life on this DVD. Hours since I had to rewatch to take notes for this post. I didn't the first time around since I was... surprised at how bad it was. Can this get worse? Yes it can.

    There is no stats since this is a re-release of a VHS title from 1993.



    "Zombie Jamboree" - formerly known as "Zombie Jamboree: The 25th Anniversary Of Night Of The Living Dead" was released on DVD on October 14th, 2008 from Sub Rosa Studios (UPC# 6 74945 12623 3) for $29.98. The title in the video reads, "Zombie Jamboree '93"

    The DVD streeted against "Dance Of The Dead", "Capricorn One" and "Chaplin".

    The release came with no slipcover nor any kind of insert(s) in a transparent DVD case. It has six chapters.

    The video is fifty-eight minutes long.

    - - -

    Extras:

    * Home Video Ads: "The Period" (anamorphic, 2007), "Strawberry Estates" (anamorphic, 2001), "Aspiring Psychopath" (full screen, 2008), "Satan's Cannibal Holocaust" (non-anamorphic, 2007) and "Bizarre Lust Of A Sexual Deviant" (full screen, 2001).

    - - -

    Audio:

    * Digital 2.0 Stereo

    - - -

    NOTES/REVIEW

    There are no subtitles.

    The DVD is not dubbed in any language(s).

    It is presented in full screen.

    The DVD's wraparound has double sided printing. The underside was NOT for this release. No. It was for an ultra low budget flick, "Ski Wolf" (2008), I wish I was kidding. The tag line is "Hairy palms are the least of his problems!". *sigh*

    Stay away. Stay far away!

    Gotta talk about this...

    All of those trailers are for cheap looking, shot-on-video productions. And yes, "The Period" is exactly what you think it is. The only thing good from the trailers is finally seeing "Strawberry Estates". I've heard about that found footage, haunted house flick for years. Now that I've seen scenes, I never have to think about it again.

    Anyhow, I've known about "Jamboree" for a few years. Haven't had the itch to buy it until now; wanted to do another entry and remembered. Looked at Amazon and saw someone selling it, new - for a penny. I should've taken that as a warning.

    Well more than a cent since postage is $3.99.



    My jaw dropped when I saw the original retail price while researching. Why the hell did Sub Rosa think this product was worth thirty bucks? Dude, I AM sorry I bought this for a penny! The video has had zero remastering. It looks and sounds like muted garbage - as you can see from the various screen snaps.

    Normally I take snaps and work on the images, making sure they looks the best it can. I just don't care here, no sense polishing a turd.

    What is this?

    This is a video pretending to cover 1993 "Zombie Jamboree: Night Of The Living Dead - 25th Anniversary Reunion & Horror Exposition" convention. It was held in Monroeville, Pennsylvania (at the Radison Hotel across the parking lot from the Monroeville Mall) on August 27th, 28th and 29th, '93.

    I say pretending since so much of the hour program is on everything BUT the actual convention. What hell?!

    I'm not joking.

    What I wanted to see was the various panel discussions that happened, not momentary blurbs. I wanted to see the people who attended; what kind of costumes were worn? I wanted the vendors, what were folks selling that weekend? Get a real atmosphere, no such luck.

    Instead we get prolong clips from NOTLD 1968 (from a poor public domain print), "There's Always Vanilla" (1971) and "The Majorettes" (1987). As well as the trailers for NOTLD 1990 and "Midnight" (1982). Plus the TV spot for the colorized version of NOTLD - at least that was interesting.

    This stuff eats up serious time on the fifty-eight minute program. Plus more time consumed with the below television ads.

    The video starts with various Latent Image commercials - all but one hasn't been issued/seen before. The rest can be found in FAR SUPERIOR condition on Elite Entertainment's "Millennium Edition" DVD. These are Iron City Beer, Guiness Book/Chevy Dealers, Awrey, Magic Lantern and The Calgon Story.

    New is a late 1960s inner city political ad for George McGovern (Democrat) about black babies having high mortality (how McGovern would do something about it).

    I did like this quote from "There's Always Vanilla" (a.k.a. "The Affair") which stars Judith Ridley (she couldn't make it to the convention; a family commitment) and George Kosana...

    Try to relax, you're a little nervous - you're gonna have a little miscarriage. Have A Drink.
    Things were different back then.



    The first panel shown is with horror starlets, Brinke Stevens and Linnea Quigley. Which kinda became an ad for "Scream Queens Illustrated". Call it what it was - amateur Playboy with horror girls (nudity). A magazine which is published by John Russo (who organized the event). Unless I'm mistaken, I have all the issues. My favorite was with starlet, Julie K. Smith (issue sixteen), she's pretty.

    You should know there was competing magazine; "Femme Fatales" which was WAY better.

    The 1990s mag had articles written by various women who have appeared in horror flicks, they're not just boobs. My favorite write-ups were from actress Debbie Rochon. It had glamour photography (no nudity), interviews, film reviews and industry news - remember this was before internet.

    The recent, but former Cinemax series which bares the same name IS based on the late magazine (both seasons are on DVD, special editions).



    Man, it's missed. The publisher, Frederick S. Clarke died in 2000 (a suicide - clinical depression). His wife, Celeste kept up the magazine until 2002. The following year the publication was sold to Mindfire Entertainment who turned "Femme Fatales" into every other men's magazine - like Maxim.

    I hated the revamp, its heart was gone. I guess I wasn't the only one, the new incarnation didn't last long. You can see the differences above; left image, original publication on the right the pod people version.

    There was word that it would come back a few years ago, new publisher. But that never happened.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-16-2017 at 07:07 AM.

  15. #30
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    PART I: THE 1968 CLASSIC - F P2



    By the way, when will the HBO series, "Perversions Of Science" (1997) come out on DVD? It lasted one season, ten half hour episodes. It was the "Femme Fatales" show of its day. *nod* Looked, yup on DVD, but in Japan only - released in 2001 (by Pioneer Entertainment), out of print. How about releasing another HBO show, Ralph Bakshi's "Spicy City" (1997; six, half hour episodes)? Yeah, both are cheesy, but entertaining.

    Something I didn't know until looking; a second season of "Spicy City" was ordered by HBO, but only if series creator Ralph Bakshi would hire professional screenwriters. He refused, plug pulled.

    Back on subject...

    The ladies (Stevens and Quigley) talk about being typecast and how they turned that into their brand. Linnea talks about the make-up she had to endure in "Return Of The Living Dead" (1985) and being in a band (music video clip shown with nudity for her song "Scream Queen").

    We get another clip from the effects panel with Tom Savini, Michael Burnett and Jay Holland. Conversations about "Dawn Of The Dead" (1978) and "Creepshow" (1982). How Savini had a hard time getting the make-up on Stephen King, the author turned actor was difficult. Other topics include where to learn to become an effects artist and filming "Martin" (1976).

    Quick clips of two additional panels, one with Bill "Chilly Billy" Cardeille, the other with Adam West.

    The only bright spots was seeing some of the stars. We get short moments with Kyra Schon, Judith O'Dea and Lori Cardille (Sarah from "Day Of The Dead" [1985]).

    You do this movie and you sort of forget it. Not forget about it, but you sort of go on with your life for five years, then you come and this is - there's like a life it sort of takes on.
    - Lori Cardille



    Here are a series of snaps; clockwise 1) Kyra Schon, 2) Marilyn Eastman, 3) George A. Romero and 4) Lori Cardille.

    The other problem I have is with NOTLD alumni Russo. He wrote and directed this video as well as narrate it. Look, he may very well be an super nice guy. But he should at best, only produce this venture.

    He talks

    so slow.

    I'm pulling hairs. Talk faster!!! Give the narration to someone else - anyone, give it to Marilyn Eastman.

    Granted Russo does provide commentary for the NOTLD clips, but it's stuff that nearly every fan already knows.



    The main spot was the reunion panel which became a Q&A session. In attendance was Romero, Karl and Marilyn Eastman, Schon, Russo, Russ Streiner and Bill Hinzman. This should've been the center piece of the release, nope - even this was too short. A brief talk about NOTLD - Duane Jones, "Monkey Shines" (1988) and "There's Always Vanilla". How can this be such a let down?

    The release is a farce.

    As mentioned, O'Dea was there, but she and Keith Wayne did not attend the panel. By the way, Wayne's appearance on the video is a blink and miss it moment - a few seconds. Again, not joking.

    I did like Romero talking about "Monkey Shines", how the studio (Orion Pictures, his first studio picture) took the movie away from him since it didn't test well and recut the feature without his approval. The original ending severed.

    We get a short clip of a scream contest; ladies give their best scream. Clips of attendees getting zombied by make-up film students.

    There's a short moment, shot from a distance; famous pin-up artist, Olivia signing prints. That's something I would've liked to have seen more. An small interview would've been nice - nope.



    Another semi-good part was Tom Savini giving a tour at the Monroeville Mall where "Dawn Of The Dead" was filmed, again much too short.

    - - -

    So who else was there?

    Kane Hodder (Jason), Gunnar Hansen (Letherface), Conrad Brooks (he appeared in several Ed Wood films) and David Prowse (the guy in the Darth Vader suit). And the previous mentioned guests.



    Above were some of the famous cars on display; 1960s Batmobile, Dragula and family car, both from "The Munsters" (1964).

    The endeavor cost $120,000.00 (over a year to bring together); spent on securing the venues (hotel space and later a theater screening of NOTLD '68 with limo for stars), guests attendees and their transportation, displays, river boat rental and advertising. Look, I'm not bitching about the event. From what fragments they showed, it seems like a cool three day exposition. I would've like to have gone. But this presentation - the highlights are so poorly executed.

    C'mon, the event was suppose to be about the 25th anniversary. But you're covering celebrities and panels which have nothing to do with the beloved horror film; show THESE in short clips. I must repeat, thirty bucks for the DVD!

    Don't even bother watching this. You can spend way better time sorting out your utensil drawer, cleaning your refrigerator's condenser fan (I'm dead serious, that can be expensive when it breaks - was lucky, mine could be fixed [8/11/13]), sorting out your coin jar, cleaning under the rim of your toilet, changing the bed linens, washing your car, sort out your browser's bookmarks. All of these things are better for you and time well spent.



    Just avoid the DVD and should you run into it, the original VHS too.

    I'll close the review with a quote...

    The people who really make movies today are the teenagers in Orange County who preview a film and get to turn in cards and say what they think should happen to it. And then the studio executives respond to that. And unfortunately they don't go across the country with it, they generally with most films - unless it's a really big picture, show it right there in California. And you know, the kids in Orange County complain about the cars you have in it. You know - why did you use a Beamer, you know? And ahhh, unfortunately that's what happens to films today.
    - Romero

    The sad thing is nothing has changed in the intervening two decades. And it's probably gotten worse.

    So ends another entry. I want to finish with something to wash away the bad taste. So here's a behind-the-scenes pix of the gang preparing to shot the posse getting ready for their zombie hunt. You can see George Kosana as Sheriff McClelland in the center (with hat). *nods*



    Come back here on July 14th, 2016 for another installment. I'm fuzzy on what, but I have a couple of ideas.

    Will it be better than this?

    *long pause*

    Maybe?
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 06-16-2017 at 07:06 AM.

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