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George A. Romero, 'Night of the Living Dead' creator, has died (latimes.com)
147 points by bdcravens on July 16, 2017 | hide | past | web | favorite | 27 comments

Night of the Living Dead was one of my favorites, and really kicked off the whole Zombie genre running up to today. RIP Mr. Romero.

Fun fact: NotLD was immediately placed in the public domain upon release, due to a notice mistake by the distributors, which was required at the time for copyright.

And as such, the full movie is up on YouTube in HD: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_f2Enn8x5s

Still holds up quite well.

Another fun fact. You don't see box sets of all the movies because Romero always had to raise money from different people so the rights for them (other than the first) are scattered.

Additionally, his indy "Night of the Living Dead" featured an African American protagonist when that was just not a thing people were doing.

Such an un-Hollywood ending too. Wow.

Not only that, but Duane Jones got the role solely on merit. The part was not written with an African-American (or a minority) in mind, but Romero decided after the fact not to update the script in any way, which gives the film this odd colour-blind/progressive trait for that time (1968)...

(Mild spoiler below)

...And then post-filming but before its release, Dr Martin Luther King Jr was shot, giving the film's treatment of Jones character an unexpected tone in context. Romero mentioned this in one of his interviews to illustrate another way in which the film was shocking to its audience (beside the then never-seen-before level of gore in the movie -- something that has gone mainstream since then and may get lost when watching the movie).

As Jordan Peele said about his Get Out, "This is the only woke horror movie of all time, save for Night of the Living Dead. ... I felt like race has not been dealt with in my favorite genre which is horror. Every other human horror has its sort of classic horror movie to go along with it. So I kind of wanted to fill the gap in that piece of the genre of conversation." (http://www.npr.org/2017/02/19/515813914/in-get-out-jordan-pe...)

There is a weirdly slow car crash scene in Night Of The Living Dead - this was written into the script since someone borrowed the car and drove a dent into it, and they needed to explain the new dent in the movie...

Absolutely. For such a 'simple' movie, comparatively to today, the ending was absolutely unexpected and shocking. Probably what made me love it!

One of the things about the film was how the humans treated each other far worse than what the zombies did to them. The zombies (the slow kind!) were just a force of nature.

"Dawn of the Dead" (1978) also had Ken Foree, another African-American actor. He played the only main male character to survive the zombie attacks.

I wonder if that is due, in part or whole, to the copyright blunder of the original...

Actually the film lab (owned by Romero) forgot to put a copyright on the release prints. Not sure "placed into the public domain" is exactly accurate - more like the file was not correctly copyrighted so it lapsed into the public domain".

In any case they fixed that with later releases but that's why a lot of the versions you see on TV are so crappy looking.

When I was about 10, I saw Night of the Living Dead and it fully cemented my love of horror movies. I had watched Tales of the Crypt, Are You Afraid of the Dark, Twilight Zone, and similar, but NOTLD was incredible. Terrifying, creepy, realistic... it gave me nightmares and shook me to my core.

Most people who aren't into the genre think that horror is all Jason-style slasher flicks. Horror is so much more than that. If you want to try something that I recommend, The Void was just released on Netflix, which is genuinely scary in a non-slasher way (although it has a lot of that too).

RIP George A. Romero

I can concur, really enjoyed The Void, it's more cosmic horror H.P. Lovecraft-esque(ish?) than typical horror fare.

Are you referring to this movie from 2016:



What a truly sad opportunity for zombi jokes. I hope he stays dead!!!

There is a song by a band called the "sprites" from a while back about him, its called "George Romero". Perhaps fitting on this sad day.

Its about learning how to survive the zombie Apocalypse because of his zombie movies.

(fan video of the song.. All I could find) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=urvL9wUTg24

" It's the end of the world We could gather half a dozen friends We'd live in hiding over at JC Penney Construct a wall to keep the mutants out

When it's the end of the world We'd land a helicopter on the rooftop Somebody breaks in through a boarded entrance Maybe we could make a run for it

I know all I need to know...

I know all I need to do...

I learned everything from George Romero, Dario Argento

Maybe Tom Savini, Stuart Gordon, and Sam Raimi "

I'll also toss in "They're Coming to get your Barbara" by No More Kings


"Driving slowly

Going to home to see their mother's grave

Walking closely There's an old man who's clothes are decayed

John can see that she's frightened

So he tries to lighten the mood

They're coming to get you, Barbara

They're coming and they'll be here soon

Don't be afraid

They just want your brain

And they're coming to get you"

I have to admit I think of George A. Romero as like I do Shakespeare.

I didn't like their work but appreciate what they did.

Well Romero's earlier work. His latter movies were just crap.

PS I'm a big fan of the genre of Romero's.

It's a shame that he didn't get more chances to branch out and ended up having to squeeze his "zombie worlds" to make a living.

Frankly I enjoy Knightriders far more than NotLD. The characters are more developed and the situation more complex than the zombie movies. I'm sorry that it doesn't get more play - I almost never see it on TV. Glad I have it on BluRay - the commentary track is the best part.

"George. George. They're coming to get y..."

oh, they got you.

If you like NotLD/etc then try ‘Martin’ which is another Romero film and (IMO) an underrated classic:


The Crazies [1] — about a virus that turns people irrationally aggressive and paranoid — is also quite good, and it's one of the few instances where the remake [2] is as good (in my opinion) as the original.

[1] http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0069895/

[2] http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0455407/

I posted above that Knightriders is my favorite Romero film.


Sometimes I wonder if HN needs to have it's own obituaries section.

Why does it need to be separate? Romero made movies that many of us enjoyed.

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