Land of the Dead George A. Romero

Zombie hounds were anticipating Romero's follow-up to 1985's Day of the Dead (which is currently being remade by the Dawn of the Dead remake's director, Zack Snyder) and the overall consensus was that the film was disappointing but not as bad as it could have been. Though technically not a sequel to Day, Land of the Dead is set in apocalyptic times, where humans are trapped in a gated community (supposedly Pittsburgh, but obviously Toronto) while on the outside of the fences live hungry zombies. These zombies are not the same old undead though; they have learned from humans, which lead to them using weapons and eventually overrunning the human sanctuary. Starring John Leguizamo, Simon Baker, Asia Argento and Dennis Hopper as a ruthless yet devilishly sardonic tyrant, Land falls into many of the traps of the current crop of flesh-eating flicks, which considering it's coming from the mind of the originator is unfortunate, but the film is not a total throwaway. The gore looks great and Romero has maintained the necessary wit and social commentary he's used so many times to his advantage. If the theatrical version turned you off, this DVD edition should turn that frown upside down. Romero and company's commentary actually improves the film, answering some of the questions the film leaves you with, such as justifying the zombie communication by referencing Bub from Day of the Dead. He also makes the director's cut more noticeable, pointing out the new scenes, as well as the cameos by Shaun of the Dead's Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright, who also return in an extra to have some fun with the cast and crew. The "making of" reveals that Hopper's inspiration was Donald Rumsfeld and the fact that Asia Argento "feels secure around zombies" thanks to her upbringing. The ending also provides some delightful interaction with Romero using a zombie as his gopher. Leguizamo gets his own humorous featurette where he has some good fun walking around the set, punching and kissing zombies and making fun of some cast glossies. Plus: remaining bits, featurettes, music video, storyboards, scream tests. (Universal)