Land of the Dead (2005) [DVD]
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Fourth instalment in director George A. Romero's zombie sequence. With the living dead having now taken over much of the world, the few survivors left have retreated to a fortified city, where the rich live in penthouse apartments while the poor suffer on the streets below. Governed by the corrupt Kaufman (Dennis Hopper), the city comes under threat when the impoverished population begin to demand a change in leadership and it becomes obvious that the army of zombies outside the city walls is beginning to adapt to its surroundings.
Bolstered by the success of 28 Days Later, Shaun of the Dead, the Resident Evil movies and the hit remake of his own Dawn of the Dead, George A. Romero returns to the horror subgenre he invented with Land of the Dead. The fourth installment in Romero's zombie cycle (and the first since 1985's Day of the Dead) presents a logical progression of events since 1968's horror classic Night of the Living Dead: Zombies (also known as "stenches" for their rotting odor) are the dominant population, and they've begun to show signs of undead intelligence and gathering power. The wealthiest survivors live comfortably in a luxury high-rise within a barricaded safe zone, ignoring the horrors of the outside world while armed scavengers stage raids in the zombie-zone to gather much-needed food and supplies. Simon Baker and John Leguizamo play mercenaries-for-hire; Dennis Hopper is their nefarious boss; and horror favorite Asia Argento (daughter of Suspiria director Dario Argento) plays a former hooker recruited into Baker's scavenger squad. While none of this seems particularly fresh or inspired, Land of the Dead benefits from hints of the social satire that made Romero's earlier zombie films so memorable. Not so much funny as gruesomely peculiar, Romero's plot isn't as inventive as it could've been, but as a big-scale B-movie, Land of the Dead delivers a handful of shocks and horror-celebrity cameos (including gore-masters Tom Savini and Greg Nicotero) that should keep horror buffs happy until the next zombie opus comes along. --Jeff Shannon, Amazon.comSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Not only is this film more than that, it is actually a very watchable film. Having not encountered a George Romero film before (except via many inaccurate parodies), I wasn't aware that there is proper direction and a decent plot at its heart.
Although occasionally you may shout at the screen as the charactors end up splitting up or abandoning safety for stupid reasons, it is still compelling viewing and there is enough suspense, gore and horror to make a highly entertaining film.
It's also worth mentioning that there is almost a Greek fable quality to the film, with stupid selfish humans ending up being horribly mauled while the more enlightened humans escape the zombies' clutches.
Lastly there is the acting, with the guy who plays The Mentalist doing a sterling job as the lead, and Dennis Hopper doing his usual best as the villain of the film. Furthermore, none of the acting comes across as hammy, and I didn't see any scenes which were stilted or not believable.
To sum up, although slow-walking Zombie films may seem ten-a-penny, really the work of an original master is beyond the sordid cliches of his imitators.Read more ›
The wealthy live in sealed skyscrapers as the poor fend for themselves on the streets.
Protecting them is an enormous tank called Dead Reckoning, controlled by a group of people led by Riley.
But when Riley loses command of the tank to an insane man bent on destroying the city, he must save it from Dead Reckoning as those who walk beyond the walls of the city slowly develop new abilities and become a much greater threat to humankind.....
In my opinion, it's much better than day of the dead and the movies after this, but let's be honest, would this film really have been made if Shaun of the Dead hadn't been released, and if it had, would it really have the budget this film had? Baker the main hero in this is just bland. He has no desperation about him, and just spends the majority of the film, looking like one of the undead.
So thank heavens for Leguizamo and Hopper, who make this film the watchable horror that it is. LOTD really tries hard in the consumerist edge, but it ends up looking more like it's borrowed from Dawn, than be original.
There are some good scenes though, everything featuring Big Dadyy is just lovely to look at, and at times Romero depicts the zombies as the victims.
All in all it's a fun movie, not necessary, but fun anyhow.
And you know that last line pains me because Romero is a God to me. His original trilogy of films are great works of art pure horror. The best Zombie flicks ever. Full stop.
Land of the Dead is a poor cousin indeed. The plot may have looked good on paper but transfers to film poorly. The black zombie who is the leader of the pack is just plain annoying and is as scary as George from Rainbow. Even the usually excellent Dennis Hooper is poorly misused. The main cast are not likeable, the gore filled CGI is awful. A good photo shop job. We have come to something where the gore in Day of the Dead from 1985 looks more realistic than today's computer generated stuff.
I feel obliged to hate on the so called expert critics, the same ones who slammed Romero's earlier films but liked this movie.
Sorry this movie is not for true horror fans of the genre.
All the reasons I hated it the first time, either by design or luck, seemed to give the movie context second time round. The embarrassment which was the human's story just served to reiterate the new found dignity and humanity of the undead, which is exactly the point of the of the overall story arc, Im guessing Romero doesnt do luck. So if youve only seen this once, youre a fan and you didnt like it, try it again, it sits well with others. As for 'Diary', that really is a piece of....
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A movie with no redeeming features whatsoever.
Story, effects, fright value, acting, humour, all absent
One of George A. Romero's best pieces. Would recommend to any horror go getters!Published 3 months ago by Nathan
George Romero packs in tons of character beats, innovation, action, logic and as always modern day satire in LOTD. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Elwyn Roberts
Romero's biggest Budget for His Opus and sadly the least impressive of all the dead flicks. The Story becomes boring as does the "BuB" type Character. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Mrs. D. Moncrieff
been a fan of George Romero fan since a kid. i know people have mixed opinions of this film but i like it a lot.Published 13 months ago by Amazon Customer