MONKEY REVIEW: Day Of The Dead (2008)

April 10, 2008

In name only remake of the George Romero film, Steve Miner’s Day Of The Dead focuses on a zombie outbreak in a small Colorado town, and stars Mena Suvari and Nick Cannon. Originally meant as a theatrical release, this movie arrives on DVD with a pretty toxic reputation, which it more or less deserves, unfortunately. It’s aimed squarely at a teenage audience with its sped up action and rapid, flashy MTV style edits, and it may even appease them, but fans of the Romero film will be puzzled as to why this is even being touted as a remake since it only bears superficial connections to the original. These are not the classic slow moving Romero zombies, either, but rather amped up zombies that bear more resemblance to the “Infected” in 28 Days Later and the zombies in the Dawn Of The Dead remake (of which this is not a continuation, despite the presence of Ving Rhames for about 2.5 seconds). These zombies can run, jump like kangaroos, possess superhuman strength and agility, and can even defy physical laws by climbing walls and ceilings like crazed spiders. (But I know what you’re thinking: They’re zombies, they never studied law!) Though it delivers on the violence and gore, too much of Day Of The Dead is so over the top that it’s more silly and absurd than scary. Strangely enough, though, it actually gets more tolerable as it goes on. I suspect that if this version of Day Of The Dead were actually made in the 80’s and had the name “Fulci” attached to it, it would now be celebrated as some kind of silly, berserk cult classic, so it’s not completely without its merits, goofy and dubious as they may be, and it’s certainly never dull. Considering the fairly low standards of the zombie genre in general, Day Of The Dead would probably fall, quality-wise, in the middle range. Romero fans should probably just stay far away, but undemanding zombie movie fans might find it a bizarre goof.


MONKEY RATING: FOUR (UNDEAD) MONKEYS

(For a brief explanation of the Monkey Review rating system, click here.)

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