Keep your Vintage to yourself!
Let’s just get one thing straight, old things are not necessarily better than their newer counterparts. Here’s an example:
I’ve been having this conversation with many friends, for many years now, and I always arrive at the same conclusion. Being older does not make something inherently better. Yes, wine gets better with age but eventually it becomes vinegar. So, let’s skip over all the unnecessary food metaphors, and focus on something that I’m truly passionate about.
George A. Romero. A name that you have probably heard one or twice around the directing pool, but do you know really know this man? He is, quite simply, the father of the modern zombie. He is the man who literally wrote the book on creating zombie movies, a creature he often describes as the true monster. Romero is responsible for writing and directing, amongst other horror classics, the “… of the dead” movie series. These films have set the tone for zombie horrors and have inspired the world to be ready for the zombie apocalypse. I’m ready, I hope you are too!
But I digress, I’ve written this post to defend my views and what I believe to be a truly excellent movie. Dawn of the Dead was originally written by George A. Romero and released in theatres in 1978. The movie followed a group of survivors at the beginning of the zombie apocalypse, who take refuge in a shopping mall. The original was an instant cult classic, and redefined the zombie genre, granted not as completely as Night of the Living Dead. However this is almost always included in a top 10 zombie movies list. To show but a couple: Washington Times & Horror Movies CA.
A second aspect that readers, unfamiliar with Romero’s work, should note, is that he includes a deep interwoven social commentary in his Zombie scripts. In the case of Dawn of the Dead, Romero comments on society’s consumerism. This is highlighted by the dead returning to the mall completely mindless.
In 2004, Zack Snyder, the brave soul that he must be, directed and released a remake of the classic Dawn of the Dead with the same title. Not only did Snyder depict some epic gore and beautifully directed special effects, but he re-imagined zombies for the 21st century. Hell, he made them truly terrifying. In the spirit of the master Snyder even managed to maintain the story as he kept the ‘consumerist’ social commentary that Romero sought to highlight with the original film. So let’s tally up this HORROR movie:
Gory (check), Scary (check), Storyline (check), Faithful to the original (check), Different enough to justify a remake (check), Screenplay (check), Unexpected ending (check) Social commentary (check) Snyder even has Ving Rhames chuck in a cheeky pointer about the movies underlying moral.
So whats missing? Why is this film any less than the original? Because script was already written? Jimi Hendrix played a better version of All Along the Watchtower than Bob Dylan (comment away, if you must). In any event this movie is actually genius in it’s own right. Granted it’s not the first but at least Rolling Stone had the respect to honour it as it deserves.
To those of your that read my last post Travel properly you dummies!(thanks!), you would know that appreciation is the name of the game. Things need to be appreciated in their own right. Let me share this one piece of wisdom, liking something new does not diminish the old. Amazingly enough, you can like both the new and old at the same time! So appreciate something for what it is, and what it represents. Don’t snub things because they’re not the original because eventually people are going to run out of ideas, and then where will you be.
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