Movie Matchup Day of the Dead vs. Day of the Dead

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1985 was a banner year for cinephiles everywhere. Back to the Future, The Goonies, Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome, Fright Night, Re-Animator, Enemy Mine, the list goes on and on. I’d need a full page to list even a handful of the amazing flicks that came out that year, but there’s only one that really matters for this Movie Matchup, and that’s Day of the Dead, the most brutal and gritty of all the George A. Romero’s zombie flicks. Hell, I would say one of the most brutal and gritty zombie films period. It was a shocking film that managed to frighten and amaze audiences. It may have been one of the lowest grossing films up to that point in Romero’s zombie career, but it still managed to go toe to toe with Back to the Future, a feat all in itself. Over the years it would gain a cult following up until the point where it became a fan favorite. Then, out of nowhere, over twenty years later a remake came out that no one was asking for and no one expected, a remake that came straight to video meaning it wasn’t going to be anywhere near as good as the original. Still, fans soldiered on and gave it a shot anyways, hoping for at least a semi decent remake. What they got was something that had little to nothing in common with the film it was remaking (despite them trying to add in a few little nods that they hoped would earn them fan cred, epic fail). Let’s take a look at each film and see how they stack up (though I’m pretty sure you know which film is going to win this matchup already).

Day of the Dead (1985): Years after the world has been overrun by the undead, a group of military personal, scientists, and civilians work at an underground facility in the hopes of finding a solution that may help them take back the planet. Unfortunately for them, vicious infighting and increasing mental instability threaten to tear the group apart and destroy what may be the last hope for humanity.

Day of the Dead (2008): In a rural Colorado town the army has suddenly closed off the entire population and refuses to let anyone leave, citing health concerns as their reasons. What they aren’t telling the population is that the health concern is zombieitous. As the virus spreads throughout the town, it leaves all but a few of the reanimated dead. The small group of still breathing humans have to come up with a quick escape plan if they hope to live to see tomorrow.

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{I would rather have these two at side…}

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{Than these four}

Even the fucking plots aren’t the same, like not at all. I don’t mind changing up a remake so that it’s not an exact remake but give me a fucking break. Other than the army being involved I don’t see how these movies are at all alike. Yeah, they throw in some little nods to the original with things like having Bub in the remake (the trained zombie from the original), but they even fucked that up. Bub in the remake is a vegetarian zombie who’s so in love with the woman who was his commanding officer before he turned that he follows her around like a puppy. It was pathetic. The movies couldn’t really have been less alike. The people who made the “remake” made a zombie film, slapped the Day of the Dead title on it, threw in some nods to the original, and then shit all over their fans. Fuck those guys, seriously, just fuck them.

Okay fine, so they aren’t really remakes if you think about it, but assuming all it takes to remake a movie is to add the title from the original onto you film which film do I think is better? That’s an easy one, the original of course. The original film is a terrific addition to the zombie genre. A brutal flick that pushed the boundaries of horror. It was a film that had a great story, a great cast, and great effects. The remake was a low grade knock off that stole the title to trick people into watching it, had a lazily written story, and a lackluster cast. Its one achievement was in the effects department, but even if the zombies looked great they were poorly presented as being super powered creatures that could run faster than normal, could cling to walls, and jump like they’d been give rabbit legs. The original gets an easy win here as the better movie.

Now let’s take a look at the film’s opposing zombie hordes.

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Day of the Dead (1985): These are vicious creatures that will do whatever they can to rip a human to shreds and feast on their remains. They don’t move very fast, but their large numbers can quickly overcome most defenses. Not only that but their determination and single-mindedness makes them a very real threat as they will never stop in their quest to consume the flesh of their living.

Day of the Dead (2008): These snarling, snapping zombies are fast, very fast, superhuman fast. Beyond that they can jump long distances and cling to walls like zombie Spidermen. They have a hunger that can never be sated, and will never stop looking for their next human meal. Large numbers would be near unstoppable, but it only takes a few to really mess up your day.

Stats:

Day of the Dead (1985)

  • Slow moving
  • Extremely vicious
  • Large numbers are capable to overcoming huge obstacles
  • Single-minded determination
  • Will never rest in their quest to devour the living
  • They can survive all but a shot to the head

Day of the Dead (2008)

  • Vicious
  • Extremely fast
  • Can jump long distances
  • Can cling to any surface
  • They can survive all but a shot to the head
  • Will never rest in their quest to devour the living

Sadly, I think it’s obvious that the remake zombies would easily take down the original zombies. They are just too fast with too many super-human abilities. There is no way the original zombies could stand up to the remake zombies. You know what though, I’m still not giving the remake zombies the win though. There is just no way I’m giving the excuse for a remake any kind of win. Not going to happen. No way, no how. Though the remake zombies may be superior, considering this movie does not come across as a real remake I’m giving the win to the original zombies.

 

The Undead Review

About The Undead Review

When I was alive I was an asshole and after I died remained pretty much the same, if not a little worse. You’d think becoming a member of the walking dead would mellow a person out, no more worrying about awkward small talk with people, no more having to be politically correct, and the entire world is your upright, bipedal buffet. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun as hell to be a zombie, just somewhat irritating at times, especially those times you have to watch a lame movie or read a lame book. Thankfully, when I am forced to watch these films or read those books, I’ve got places like The Undead Review to bitch and moan to my heart’s content. {When he’s not devouring the living or sinking his teeth into a good film The Undead Review (Andy Taylor) spends his time writing his own stories or hunting down the paranormal. Oh, and did we mention his blind dog once saved the world?)
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