Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Zombie (1979)

ZombieOriginally perceived by critics as a Dawn of the Dead rip off, Lucio Fulci's Zombie is an over the top gorefest that has become a classic among fans over the years. Featuring some of the most realistic looking zombies ever to be seen on film (they're rotting and decomposing and look brilliantly disgusting) and plenty of memorable scenes (including the infamous splinter in the eye scene and the beautifully shot underwater battle between a shark and a resiliant zombie), Zombie is a gorehounds' dream. The story is simple, a few inhabitants of a cursed island all become chow for a horde of zombies, but it works for the film as it is simple, unsettling gorey horror Fulci style. There's no social commentary or dark humor like in Romero's Dead trilogy or Dead Alive, just pure horror all the way; and while it may not be as profound as Fulci's The Beyond, Zombie is still a more than solid horror flick worth seeing if you have the stomach for it. Anchor Bay has assembled a solid DVD for the film (they always do great jobs for cult horror films on DVD) with enough extras to satisfy most fans of the film.

"Zombi 2" is the same film as Zombie. That much we've figured out. There's also a "Zombi 3" and a "Zombi 4." What some reviewers have asked is where is the missing chapter? So here goes.

When George Romero's "Dawn of the Dead" was released in Italy, it was released under the name "Zombi." "Zombi 2" was written before Dawn, but was slightly changed to cash in on Romero's success. Thus, rather than call it "Zombi" again, they stuck on a "2," making it seem like a sequel.

When "Zombi 2" was released in the U.S., the name was changed once again, this time to "Zombie."

And the confusion ends.

Buy Zombie (1979) Now

A boat on a New York City coast is discovered by the coast guards as abandoned but only with a literally undead creature on board but gets destroyed, leaving the coast guards puzzled. A reporter with a young woman in search of her missing father try to investigate by going to the caribbean islands with the help of some friends, but a terrible voodoo curse or virus is causing the dead to come up from the graves of the island to devour the flesh of the living as the reporter and company must struggle together to survive the island of the dead.

A shocking and excellent Italian horror thriller from Lucio Fulci whom was fresh off of doing comedies, westerns and thrillers gives us one of the most repulsive and scariest cult classics of all time. There is a creepy tropical atmosphere to give the movie's feel a tender eerieness with it's groovy music score by Fabio Frizzi and graphic gore effects such as the memorable if absolutely horrifying scene involving a woman getting her eyeball stabbed through a large splinter of wood.

The 2-Disc anniversary edition is certainly an improvement over the Anchor Bay version with better picture and digital sound quality that also contains the original Italian language track with English subtitles. It's extras are terrific, it's got featurettes on the history and behind the scenes of how this movie got made with it's success around the world, it's original european theatrical trailer, other trailers to zombie movies avalible from Media Blasters DVD, interviews with the actors & filmmakers and a photo, poster-and-still gallery.

This movie belongs in every horror lover's DVD collection, i highly recommend it but not for light sleepers or the squeamish.

Also recommended: From Dusk Till Dawn, The Evil Dead, Night of the Living Dead ( 1968 and 1990), Dawn of the Dead ( 1978 and 2004), Day of the Dead, City of the Living Dead, House By The Cemetery, Burial Ground: The Nights of Terror, Bio-Zombie, Demons, Suspiria, Tenebre, Cannibal Ferox, Jungle Holocaust, Cannibal Holocaust, Blood Feast, Battle Royale, The New York Ripper, Scanners, Maniac ( 1980), Freddy Vs. Jason, Nightmare City, Cannibal Apocalypse, 28 Days Later.., Return of the Living Dead Trilogy, Re-Animator and The Beyond.

Read Best Reviews of Zombie (1979) Here

Synopsis: When an abandoned ship is found in the New York harbor the local police show up to investigate and they are shocked to find that the living dead are all that's left on board. Anne Bowles (Tisa Farrow), hasn't heard from her father in months and the last she heard of him was that he was on a remote island called Matoul. Reporter Peter West (Ian McCulloch), has been assigned by Gotham newspaper to investigate the bizarre homicide that took place on the derelict boat found in the New York harbor. Anne and Peter join forces as they set off to find her father and the truth about the living dead found on the boat in the harbor. They set off for Matoul and they run into a vacationing couple on a boat Brian (Al Cliver), and Susan (Auretta Gay), who come along for the ride. They encounter Dr. Menard (Richard Johnson), once they arrive on the island and it doesn't take long before all hell breaks loose.

Zombie was written by Dardano Sacchetti as an action/adventure thriller before George Romero's Dawn of The Dead was released in Italy. Dario Argento would re-cut Dawn of The Dead for Italian audiences and rename it Zombi. The success of Zombi in Italy Dardano Sacchetti's script would be reworked by Elisa Briganti to more resemble Romero's movie making Zombie (Zombi 2) a sequel in name only.

Lucio Fulci has always been able to create tension and atmosphere in his films creating nightmarish visions on minuscule budgets. Zombie isn't filled with great performances, but then most of Lucio Fulci's work from the late 1970's on isn't about the actors as much it is about using the actors as objects to achieve his vision. Zombie is filled with some of Lucio Fulci's goriest set pieces included the eyeball being forced on a splinter sequence. Sergio Salvati who has worked as cinematographer on ten Lucio Fulci films and on Zombie he serves up a visual feast as he uses every inch of the frame to capture all the carnage. Through the years Lucio Fulci's Zombie has built up quite the reputation making it a fan favorite and one of the zombie genre's all time classics.

The BluRay:

Zombie comes on a 25 GB single layer BluRay. The film is presented in a 1080 progressive anamorphic widescreen. Colors have never look as vibrant as they do for this transfer, also black and contrast levels look consistently strong throughout. Details generally look crisp and there are no problems with compression. It should be noted that though grain is evident throughout, there are a handful of moments in which its look likes some DNR has been applied to the image.

This release comes with six audio options, a 7.1 DTS-HD mix in English, a 7.1 DTS-HD mix in Italian, a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround EX mix in English, a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround EX mix in Italian, a Dolby Digital Mono mix in English and a Dolby Digital Mono mix in Italian. There are a multitude of audio options to choose from and all of the them are in very good shape and for purists the original mono mixes have been included. New to this release are a pair of 7.1 DTS-HD mixes in English and Italian respectively. Channel separation of these two mixes is extremely good and the lower end frequencies are also well represented. This release comes with ten subtitle options, English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Português, Deutsch, Japanese, Chinese, Korean and Thai.

Extras for this release are spread over two discs.

Extras on disc one include a brief intro before with film with filmmaker Guillermo Del Toro, a poster & still gallery, four radio spots, two T.V. spots and two trailers, international trailer (3 minutes 45 seconds anamorphic widescreen) and U.S. trailer (1 minutes 33 seconds anamorphic widescreen) and a audio commentary with actor Ian McCulloch and Diabolik magazine editor Jay Slater. Outside of few moments of dead silence, this is actually a pretty good audio commentary that provides a lot interesting information about this film.

Extras on disc two (25 GB Blu-Ray) include eight featurettes, `Zombie Wasteland' interviews with actors Ian McCulloch, Richard Johnson and Al Cliver and actor / stuntman Ottaviano Dell'Acqua (22 minutes 19 seconds anamorphic widescreen, in English & Italian with English subtitles), `Flesh Eaters on Film' interview with producer Fabrizio De Angelis (9 minutes 39 seconds anamorphic widescreen, in Italian with English subtitles), `Deadtime Stories' interviews with co-screenwriters Elisa Briganti and Dardano Sacchetti (14 minutes 30 seconds anamorphic widescreen, in Italian with English subtitles), `World of the Dead' interviews with cinematographer Sergio Salvati and production / costume designer Walter Patriarca (16 minutes 29 seconds anamorphic widescreen, in Italian with English subtitles), `Zombie Italiano' interviews with special make-up artists Gianetto De Rossi and Maurizio Trani and special make-up artist Gino De Rossi (16 minutes 34 seconds anamorphic widescreen, in Italian with English subtitles), `Notes on a Headstone' interview with composer Fabio Frizzi (7 minutes 25 seconds anamorphic widescreen, in Italian with English subtitles), `All in the Family' -interview with Lucio Fulci's daughter Antonella (6 minutes 8 seconds anamorphic widescreen, in Italian with English subtitles) and `Zombie Lover' Guillermo Del Toro shares his thoughts on Zombie (9 minutes 37 seconds anamorphic widescreen, in Italian with English subtitles).

Topics discussed in these eight featurettes include, the lasting legacy / popularity of Zombie, make-up and special effects the shark and the eye ball scenes, what is was like to work in Italian cinema in the late 1970's and early 1980's, guerilla style filmmaking like how they were able to steal the shot on the zombies crossing over the bridge, the origins of the screenplay including a once proposed western / zombie hybrid, how Lucio Fulci became involved with this film, how this film changed Italian horror films, production related topics like the visual look of the film, the sets and creating a new zombie, audience reaction to the film, the score and all the participants discuss what it was like to collaborator with Lucio Fulci. The interview with Antonella Fulci is well balanced discussion about who Lucio Fulci was in his personal life and professional life, while the interview with Guillermo Del Toro is nothing more than a super fan discussing how he became of a fan of this film.

In all there is a lot of ground covered in these eight featurettes, which were all put together by Red Shirt Pictures, who are without a doubt the best company currently working on special features for Cult movie releases. Overall Blue Underground gives Zombie its strongest home video release to date.

Note: Blue Underground are also releasing Zombie on DVD.

Written By Michael Den Boer ,Thanks Micheal.

Want Zombie (1979) Discount?


First, this movie from an entertainment value from 1 to 10 is a 10 plus.

Second, this movie from a technical visibility and technical audibility release value on DVD from 1 to 10 is a 4.

Reason for the first critique: The PROS

1. Director Lucio Fulci directs a fast paced nail biter from start to finish.

2. Excellent film scoring as the music really accentuates the drama.

3. Excellent casting, the actors are solid for this type of film no phonies.

4. Excellent locations from New York City to the exotic Carribean where the two main characters meet up with vacationers who agree to charter their boat and take the main two characters to the island of Matool where the horror begins you'll know why there going there as you see the film.

5. Excellent makeup effects for zombies and the gruesome and great death scenes.

6. Excellent cinematography to heighten the tension during the film.

Reason for the second critique: The CONS

1. Anchor Bay Entertainment's DVD release of this movie is poor. This critique of poor DVD quality is rare when it comes to Anchor Bay Entertainment releases as their remastered-from-the-good-old-cellar-movie reputation normally puts out excellent quality DVDs with full frame-by-frame color correction, removal of original picture blurriness, and excellent audio track remastering, but this movie somehow slipped through the cracks as perhaps there was a rush to get this movie out on DVD due to its immense popularity among gore hounds and Fangoria Magazine fanatics. The rush job to DVD certainly shows. And below are the main points to look out for on this particular Anchor Bay Entertainment release.

2. Poor picture clarity. The picture from start to finish is viewable, but not at all crisp and without blur. This will be corrected see ALTERNATIVE DVD below.

3. Poor color management. The color from start to finish lacks vibrance and richness. The color frame-by-frame is as dead and bland as the zombies themselves. The opening scenes especially as the abandoned yacht( or so you think ) sails into New York Harbor as it is coralled by the New York police, you will see that the city buildings including the World Trade Center towers look more purple/grey in tone, the harbor looks dark brown-grey in color, the sky looks grey in color, and the facial tones of the characters look more fuscia-pinkinsh-beige. The color on this release is horrible and will be corrected. The most frustrating aspect of the poor color is when the movie shfts to the Carribean as two main characters meet up with two vactioners and the four somehow agree to sail for the Island of Matool, after some hesistancy, you will see that the color really suffers here. The exotic locations the beautiful water, the green of the palm trees, and the like are painfully lacking the vibrant standout color correction needed to make every film frame standout with crisp clear picture quality and life like color. This will be corrected see ALTERNATIVE DVD below.

3. Muddled audio track. The sound is clear, but not at the level of a remastered audio track with either DTS or THX Sound treatments. The musical score periodically steps on the sound effects This will be corrected see ALTERNATIVE DVD below.

4. From the original uncut full-version, there are some scenes missing on this DVD. This will be corrected see ALTERNATIVE DVD below.

5. Periodic purple outlines on the edges of the widescreen black bars.

This will be corrected see ALTERNATIVE DVD below.


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