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Birth of the Living Dead

4.1 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

In 1968 a young college drop-out named George A. Romero directed Night of the Living Dead, a low budget horror film that shocked the world, became an icon of the counterculture, and spawned a zombie industry worth billions of dollars that continues to this day.

Birth of the Living Dead shows how Romero gathered an unlikely team of Pittsburghers policemen, iron workers, teachers, ad-men, housewives and a roller-rink owner to shoot a revolutionary guerrilla style film that went on to become a cinematic landmark, offering a profound insight into how our society worked in a singular time in American history.

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Review

If you re a fan of zombies in any way, shape, or form, you need to watch this movie one of the most extensive, informative, and even entertaining looks at Night of the Living Dead. Very highly recommended. --Brian M. Sammons, Hell Notes

Fascinating, hugely entertaining documentary chronicles the making of the classic horror film while also tracing its lineage, its colossal influence on the zombie sub-genre, and analysis of its cultural import. And kudos to director Rob Kuhns; he s crafted a spot-on, ingratiating, informative film that should appeal to the died-in-the-wool horror fanatic as well as the interested newbie. This is easily one of my favorites of 2013 so far. --Dean Galanis, Forces of Geek

Mesmerizing...I finally understand why I was not only scared out of my wits, but was simultaneously watching a cinematic breakthrough and cultural phenomenon. Birth of the Living Dead is immensely watchable and abundantly enlightening, with one ah-hah moment after another. --Bill Moyers

Product Details

  • Actors: George A. Romero, Larry Fessenden, Mark Harris, Gale Anne Hurd, Elvis Mitchell
  • Directors: Rob Kuhns
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: First Run Features
  • DVD Release Date: January 7, 2014
  • Run Time: 76 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00FL02H1E
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #111,415 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
Wow what a fantastic and educational documentary . I'm a huge romero fan , even met him at a horror con, nicest man I've ever met next to john carpenter , this doc is right up anyone ally if you like night of the living dead it basically tells all from beginning to end of making a movie outside the Hollywood machine that makes utter crap these days .
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I thought I was going to watch something else, but finally got into the thread of the film and was drawn in with a great force. I didn't know much about the original 1968 film The Night of the Living Dead, but now I understand its significance. This documentary presents the context in which the original film emerges, and analyzes, with great success, its significance. A lively documentary, and an education as well.
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Format: DVD
This is NOT a documentary on the making of the film, so if you want to see interview clips of all the surviving actors and whatnot, you'd be better off watching the extras on the countless DVD releases of the film. BIRTH OF THE LIVING DEAD takes a much different approach, more from a cultural and critical perspective, analyzing the impact of the film at its time... and since. All aspects are touched on in this documentary, as to what was going on in the world at the time - the racial tensions, the Vietnam war, etc. Romero has frequently admitted that much of that was unintended during filming, but that does not reduce the social relevance of the film today. Romero is on hand and is always candid with his information and recollections, and other critics, historians also voice in. Usually I would steer clear of a film that takes an historian approach, where most of the talking heads weren't involved in the film, but this is a rare case where it really works perfectly. I've seen NOTLD a million times (the first time at a drive-in at age 10 in 1971 - which changed MY life), and I expected to be watching just another boring retread of Russo or whoever recollecting details of the shoot and so forth. But that is not the case with BIRTH OF THE LIVING DEAD. This documentary made me all excited about the film again, making me remember how exciting and horrifying it was for me back in 1971 and the many times I watched it after that - I even bought and owned the full film w/sound on 8mm (very expensive) to show friends in the mid 70's! Those were PRIMITIVE days folks! NOTLD had a HUGE impact back then to movie or horror buffs, something that may not be as easily understood today where everything and anything is at your fingertips with the swipe of a mouse. The BIRTH of NOTLD started not only with its creator(s), but also with its audience. And that's what this film shows. Excellent!
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Format: DVD
Birth of the Living Dead (2013)

Wow, this one provides the kind of fun for fanciers of Zombie films that comes along only once in a great while. “Birth of the Living Dead” takes us on a trip in the way-back machine some 45 years into the past to peek into that time that changed Zombies and Zombie movies forever. This documentary on the making of “Night of the Living Dead” (1968) has long stretches of George Romero smiling and remembering how the film ever got made and distributed in the first place-not a sure thing even after the finished film rested in the can, ready to go.
Romero had almost no money to make this now classic and hugely influential film. He never had enough cash and even during filming had to scrape around for enough money to finish. Even with repeated shaking of the money tree, the eventual budget came to only $114,000. Like many low budget films since, many of the cast and crew filled multiple roles. Many of the cast members were friends and business associates of Romero and his fellow film makers. Also in keeping with later low budget Zombie films, the actual Zombies were volunteers, people acting as Zombies (and in this case mock eating actual organs and offal). One bold lady acted as a totally naked Zombie-just for the fun of it.
Commentary by numerous Zombie film aficionados as well as George himself keep the interviews lively. The most famous of the speakers is big time Hollywood producer Gail Anne Hurd who has produced such popular films as the first three “Terminator” films, both “Punisher” films the amazing and wonderful “Armageddon” and two “Hulk” movies. She has also produced the TV smash hit “The Walking Dead” and beginning in the summer of 2015 will produce a spin off called “Fear of the Walking Dead” set in LA.
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Format: DVD
A very excellent documentary on the making of the movie but I have to take away one star because none of the original cast made any appearances in this film. In my opinion the Night of the Living Dead is a masterpiece and I would have liked to have heard from the actors and actresses who are still alive and get their take on the making of this film. That's the only gripe I have about this documentary; other than that it was excellent!
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Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
Nice documentary of an extraordinary film. Even if your not a fan you will be amazed at how things came together to make a legendary film that still continues to have an impact today.
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Anyone who grew up on the Romero films will love to learn how Romero and his Pittsburgh ad company came to make the movie Night of the Living Dead. Filled with interesting facts, the film will be of great interest to budding independent filmmakers or fans of the film.
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