A high-tech, color remake of the 1968 black-and-white low-budget horror classic about corpses that come back to life as flesh-eating zombies and terrorize the Pennsylvania countryside. Following the original plot almost to the letter (with a few surprises thrown in), the film opens in a rural cemetery where the heroine Barbara and her brother are visiting the grave of their mother. The brother is killed by one of the zombies and Barbara seeks refuge in a farmhouse with six other survivors. While desperately trying to barricade the house against the zombies, the seven people inside fight among themselves, undermining their attempts to fend off the slow-moving, but relentless army of ghouls.
Color by TVC.
Filmed in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Began shooting April 23, 1990; completed shooting June 8, 1990. Released in the USA October 19, 1990. Released on video April 17, 1991.
A remake of George A. Romero's 1968 horror classic. Shot in black and white on a shoestring budget of $130,000, the original "Night of the Living Dead," with its nihilistic tone, realistic, near-documentary style and subtle social commentary, broke new ground in the horror genre. It became a cult hit and has had an influence on all subsequent horror films. Romero followed his 1968 success with two sequels, the critically acclaimed "Dawn of the Dead" in 1979 and "Day of the Dead" in 1985. While the original version is still successful, Romero was forced to do a remake because of a rights loophole in the original contract. The original producers had to do a sequel at that point or someone else would have been able to do it instead.
Feature film directorial debut for Tom Savini. Savini got his start as an actor, stuntman, and director on the TV show "Tales From the Darkside." He was also the special makeup effects artist on both "Dawn of the Dead" and "Day of the Dead," as well as other horror films such as "Friday the 13th." According to Savini, "[George Romero] had in mind that so many people knew the original story that they could be manipulated...When you expect something to happen and it doesn't, there's that element of surprise. From that second on you don't know what to expect, which makes this film scary to those who have seen the original as well as to those who will be seeing it for the first time."
"...Witty, entertaining....This one knows how to bring tired zombies back to life..." - 10/19/1990 New York Times, p.C17
...It is certainly a well-sustained entertainment..." - 10/19/1990 Los Angeles Times, p.F10