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  1. #76
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    Wasn't expecting this - was still tinkering on what to write next.

    Then this happens.



    Actor Joseph Pilato has died, he was seventy.

    March 16th, 1949 - March 24th, 2019

    He died peacefully in his sleep like director, George A. Romero; cause of death is (currently) unknown.

    News of his demise was announced by actor Marty Schiff on his Facebook page...

    It is with great sadness that I inform you that actor and old friend Joseph 'Joe' Pilato passed away quietly in his sleep last night. Rest in Peace, Joe.
    - posted on March 25th

    Schiff by the way played "Motorcycle Raider" in "Dawn Of The Dead" (1978). That was Pilato very first movie.



    Pilato had a bit part as "Skipper" in the '78 film. His appearance is mostly edited out of the theatrical cut (only in a single long shot) and deleted entirely from the Dario Argento version - "Zombi". It only (officially) exist in the Extended Cut, a.k.a. the Cannes Film Festival version.

    I say 'officially' since his role, all of it can be seen the bootleg endeavor, "Extended Mall Hours" cut which combined Argento and Cannes cuts (theatrical was edited from the Cannes version).

    There is an sub entry for that - for more info, click here.

    By the way, that extra gun was pointed at Stephen "Flyboy" Andrews (David Emge), not Pilato's character; a bit off camera.

    The actor had for the most part retired, but did do the horror convention circuit. When he was acting, Pilato had done several genre features; "Knightriders", "Alienator", "The Demolitionist", "Wishmaster", "Empire Of The Dark" and "Effects".

    While researching for this post, discovered at one time the actor wanted to be a lawyer in the 1970s. And something hit me.

    In strange coincidence, he would begin and end his career within the Romero undead universe.



    As mentioned above, "Dawn" was his first feature. His last movie was as a voice actor in the 3D animated feature, "Night Of The Living Dead: Darkest Dawn" as Harry Cooper, the role done by Karl Hardman in the original 1968 film.

    "Darkest Dawn" was a previous Retrospective entry; click here for Part I, Part II and Part III.

    His '78 film credit isn't Skipper, but "Officer At Police Dock".

    It is his death scene in "George A. Romeo's Day Of The Dead" (1985) as Captain Henry Rhodes which became legendary for its gore (practical effects), replicated to various degrees in zombie flicks around the world. Still in the imagination of fans to this day.

    The other bit - epiphany?



    While doing the image work (somewhat of a rush job; found out hours ago). It occurred to me that actor Joe Keery (from "Stranger Things" as Steve Harrington) kinda looks like a younger version of Pilato.

    Yeah, we lost another horror icon. Rest in peace.
    Last edited by JohnIan101; 03-31-2019 at 04:49 AM.

  2. #77
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    PART I: THE 1968 CLASSIC - S

    Heat is tangible, the image before you is distorted; simmers, curls and bakes. If you had an egg, you could cook it on the asphalt. It's that damn hot and this is only June. This would be the time to migrate to cooler locales. You need some wheels, hell even a bicycle will do.

    Few trees line on the side of the road and no abandoned cars. This is was a scenic route.

    There is a reprieve. In the distance you hear a stream, running water - cool water, magnificent. Homing on the sound after a few minutes you come across the source. A little piece of heaven all to yourself.

    A careful scan of the area show it free of zeds or anyone else. This would make a great time to give your clothes a quick wash and hot enough to dry it rather quick on some low hanging branches.

    You strip nude and give all the particulars a good wash in the creek. You can see dust and dirt coming off your duds. This has been a long time coming.

    A moment later after hanging them, you drop in - neck high in the succulence. This is how you want to spend the afternoon. Just chillin'... literally. Eyes close to let it all in; sounds and crisp smells of the water.

    The smells... smells?

    An odor comes lingering in - faint at first, but quite unmistakable, decaying flesh. And more distinct from the heat wave. But where? You can't see him or her from the vantage of the waters. Is it more than one?

    This could be very bad. Nude, no weapons near you and blind to the threat. The only thing you can do is hope and wait for it to wander away. Silence is your only weapon. Birds have now gone mute. From nearby, dragging feet is heard.

    And that's when it was seen. Across from you on the other side of the creek it comes. From the general appearance this former guy was auto mechanic. It has part of his throat missing (strands of skin still hanging) and long stained overalls. It sees you, but is puzzled? Are you alive, perhaps? It gives out a minor moan, but you remain still. It waddles closer to you. Still not moving.

    The dead man stops, head slightly tilted, like that old RCA dog. Still not moving. Another light moan. Nothing. Maybe it thinks you're a fallen statute or even a printed billboard in the water. Yet again, another minor moan. Another few steps forward.

    Still you remain ridged.

    It pauses for a minute then hears a scurry to its right - a deer who saw the danger, flees. The zombie knows fresh meat and attempts to follow 'living' prey. It waddles again now towards the deer's previous location, tries to satisfy unholy hunger.

    A short moment later - alone once more. Not gonna play this again. You were damn lucky.

    Clothes are mostly dry and put away in your backpack and on your person. You reach in the creek to refill your empty plastic bottles. Time return back to the road. Back to the scorcher. You need portable shade, you need an umbrella.

    It's been awhile since the last post. Too long, but hardly forgotten. It is a never ending quest for stuff about and related to "Night". Getting lost online I find yet another... particular.

    This isn't on the Romero film - at all. But what appears to be an homage for a different purpose.

    I came across the autobiography of Kerry Cohen who's youth was marred by lack of structure and longing for attention - any kind of attention. Sex does not equal love. Considering the nature of the memoir - this could've been a very deliberate cover image - dead on the inside (at the time).



    This is the book, "Loose Girl: A Memoir of Promiscuity". Released on May 1st, 2008 from Hyperion (ISBN# 978-1401303495) for $21.95. The hardback is two hundred-ten pages long.

    The dimensions are 6.1 x 9.2 inches. Was later released on paperback.

    For everyone who was that girl. For everyone who knew that girl. For everyone who wondered who that girl was.
    - Cohen

    Dark and honest autobiography about Cohen's youth. Bad decisions, various vices and addictions; including STD scares and more.



    Doesn't that cover look very familiar - even quite iconic? Say a little dead girl who ended up consuming her mom.

    When I first saw the Cohen cover I thought the girl on the cover was dead - her eye milked up. Then again, I saw it in a poor res. Nah, her eyes are closed, head pointed down a bit. For the effect, just look away from that pix. She looks sinister. That image above was cleaned up - even the photos online were crap. Did a good job on what was available. Before you ask...

    I do no own this book or the book on CD set.

    Seven discs; unabridged - read by Cynthia Halloway. Out of print from Tantor; sold for $29.99. Released on June 17th, 2008. 8.5 hours long.



    Digging deeper, discovered the cover girl image was also repurposed for another book; "Raw Blue" by Kiristy Eagar in 2009. The story about a surfer girl, Carly (nineteen) who want to be alone - working just enough to get by. But she can't play forever.

    It's a young adult novel. Also do not own this book.

    As you can see they took some liberties to the picture. A tank top was photoshopped on her, no more just black lacy bra.

    The above was the Australian cover, the author is Australian by the way.



    The cover image was different for the North American release.

    There you go. Not the best of "Night" content, but this will have to do for now. Gotta love the fact that horror movie touched so many people; nearly fifty-one years later and still being felt. Will post again, soon.

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