Skip to main content
  1. AXS Entertainment
  2. Arts & Entertainment
  3. Movies

Movie Review: 'Birth of the Living Dead' (2013)-Netflix streaming roulette

See also

Birth of the Living Dead

Rating:
Star4
Star
Star
Star
Star

This is the tenth in a series of 'Netflix streaming roulette' reviews. Austin horror examiner Michael Taylor reviews the first horror(ish) movie off 'Netflix' streaming that he's never seen before. Wish him luck.

The horror documentary 'Birth of the Living Dead' wants to make one thing abundantly clear; 'Night of the Living Dead' wasn't just a horror movie. It was a cinematic game changer, a societal mirror, a film that created the self reflexive nature that would define every horror movie made in its wake.

Most hardcore horror fans like myself already know this, but it's always interesting to hear these facts put into context, which this documentary does exceedingly well.

Director George Romero captured lightning in a bottle when he shot 'Living Dead' in 1967. It was the first notable motion picture shot in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but neither he or the cast and crew were prepared for its seismic worldwide impact.

Through interviews with Romero, and other filmmakers (and a elementary school class which uses the film as an educational tool), we see just how much the film changed pop culture. 'Living Dead' reflected the turmoil of Vietnam and the Civil Rights movement. But for Romero it was simply a means to an end to expand his cinematic career.

Romero is wonderfully candid and droll, downplaying his groundbreaking work. While audiences were shocked and impressed to see a black actor in a lead role, he simply explained that actor Duane Jones was simply the best actor that he knew.

But for film critics like Elvis Mitchell, the implications of Jones' casting were huge, and life-changing, and his commentary is another highlight of the film.

But just as much as the film explores the film's social commentary it also provides insight into the film's ramshackle production and harried distribution. All involved in the film wore several hats, juggling their duties exceedingly well.

The film suffers from the lack of commentary for other cast and crew involved in 'Night of the Living Dead', which would be interesting for multiple perspectives. But 'Birth of the Living Dead' states its case well; every zombie movie made in its wake owes a debt of gratitude to a grainy black and white film that injected terror and gore into audiences the world over.

Advertisement

Today's top buzz...

  • Mariah Carey
    Mariah Carey requires kittens before a show, but that's not the strangest celebrity rider
    Music Buzz
  • Clayton Kershaw
    Watch Clayton Kershaw throw a ball at Jimmy Kimmel
    Video
    Today's Buzz
  • Jessie J
    Jessie J enlists Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj for her new song 'Bang Bang'
    Music Buzz
  • Journey
    Journey and Steve Miller jam out at the Shoreline Amphitheater
    Camera
    16 Photos
  • Batman
    Batman and Robin Originals reveal comedy secrets at Comic-Con press conference
    Camera
    12 Photos
  • Metta World Peace
    Metta World Peace gets physical during the Venice Basketball League game
    Video
    Sports Buzz

Related Videos: