Night of the Living Dead
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When the 30th Anniversary Edition came out, I bought it on VHS as I was curious to see what they termed as "new footage." What I got was a horrible mess that butchered the original film, removed the original music for a terrible synthesizer score and added pointless footage that makes the viewer want to grind his teeth down to the gums. One of the additions is a new character: a fire and brimstone preacher. While the acting in the original is amateurish, at best, the "actor" who plays the preacher makes the original cast look like Oscar winners by comparison. He snarls, and howls and gnashes his teeth like he has rabies. Even more ridiculous is the extra footage of Bill Hinzman -- the "cemetary zombie" in the original. The extra footage shows Hinzman's character emerging from the grave, then cuts to the original 1968 opening footage with Judith O'Dea and Russell Streiner. It's absolutely ridiculous as Hinzman looks 30 years older in the new footage. In addition, there are more zombies and a new ending to the film that makes no sense whatsoever. This "new" version is a piece of trash that desecrates the most frightening film of all time. Avoid it like the plague!
ORIGINAL VERSION: *****
30 Anniversary version: No Stars
Okay...as I'd feared, my negative review of the John Russo-massacred "30th Anniversary Edition" of Night of the Living Dead has been lumped unwittingly into this product's review, so I' m writing this one to clarify.
This DVD edition is the best edition I've seen of the film yet. Anchor Bay may have raised the ires of legions of Living Dead fans by releasing the sacrilegious 30th Anniversary Edition, but Elite Entertainment did right by this new edition.
George A. Romero's personal appreciation appears in the back of this DVD -- this immediately restores our faith. And the contents don't disappoint -- the picture and sound are good, and though this doesn't exactly contain the richest batch of bonus materials (sets like the excellent 3-disc edition of Dario Argento's Suspiria and the recent double-disc Re-Animator both feature loads of extras), it is a nice solid collection. You get a Duane Jones interview (sadly with only audio and no image, but still great); an on-camera chat between Judith Ridley (Judy) and Marilyn Eastman (Helen); the hilarious student-film spoof "Night of the Living Bread" by Kevin S. O'Brien (which also appeared in the double-cassette VHS edition); two commentary tracks with Romero, Russo, Russ Streiner, Eastman, Karl Hardman and others. One very illuminating portion of this DVD for non-film-scholars is visually boring but informative -- several histories outlining the beginning of Romero's Latent Image company, on Hardman and Eastman's company, and how the two were married to produce Night of the Living Dead.
THIS is the right edition of Night of the Living Dead, the one to get for both fans and non-fans alike.Read more ›
Until I opened the box to see the little booklet that revealed the ugly truth... There are new scenes alright. New scenes made by new people TWO YEARS AGO! The new scenes are badly acted, badly written, and badly edited. Scenes that subtract from the overall impact of the film and do nothing but taint a true horror classic. The new music is a cheesy synthesizer score that does nothing but irritate and distract throughout the film. (Cheesy synthesizer is good for other horror films, but it does NOT work well here.)
I originally bought this at a store, got it home and didn't even sit through the whole thing. I zipped through various chapters to see the HORRIBLE new additions in all their glory. The next day I took it back and told them it skipped because I was so determined to get rid of it.
But the only--I repeat, ONLY--DVD of "Night" worth touching is one released by Elite Entertainment. This gorgeous DVD is essentially the same package as the one Elite released on VHS through Anchor Bay a few years back: a pristine print of "Night," along with trailers & an amusing parody film called "Night of the Living Bread" (get it? get it?). This DVD also includes two audio commentary tracks featuring various members of the cast & crew & commercials that George Romero directed back in the '60s! All in all, this is far superior to anything else on the market. Seek it out--it's well worth the effort!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Sorry, but no go on this version of NOTLD. This blu-ray has cut scenes, which were annoying. There is film blemish. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Robert E. Rodden II
This is a old classic.....Its a movie from 1968, so its waaaay slow, but for its time i think is actually a brutal and shocking film.... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Fluminense Rio