Night of the Living Dead (1968) - Rotten Tomatoes

Night of the Living Dead (1968)



Critic Consensus: George A. Romero's debut set the template for the zombie film, and features tight editing, realistic gore, and a sly political undercurrent.

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Movie Info

A group of people hide from bloodthirsty zombies in a farmhouse.

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Judith O'Dea
as Barbara
Marilyn Eastman
as Helen Cooper
Bill Heinzman
as Cemetery Ghoul
Charles Craig
as Newscaster/Ghoul
David Lee Hartman
as Ghoul/Reporter
Frank Doak
as Scientist
George Kosana
as Sheriff McClelland
S. William Hinzman
as Cemetery Zombie
Bill Cardille
as Reporter
Mark Ricci
as Washington Scientist
George A. Romero
as Washington Reporter (uncredited)
John A. Russo
as Washington Reporter/Ghoul (uncredited)
Al Croft
as Ghoul
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News & Interviews for Night of the Living Dead

Critic Reviews for Night of the Living Dead

All Critics (59) | Top Critics (8)

The immediate, quasi-documentary feel, a result of budgetary constraints, actually served the film's horror, jolting audiences because it all seemed just a little too real.

October 12, 2017 | Full Review…

If [Romero's] original vision of the undead looks dulled by today's standards, his embedded political commentary on racism feels just as sharp.

October 7, 2013 | Full Review…

Although pic's basic premise is repellent -- recently dead bodies are resurrected and begin killing human beings in order to eat their flesh -- it is in execution that the film distastefully excels.

October 3, 2008 | Full Review…

George Romero's remarkably assured debut, made on a shoestring, about a group of people barricaded inside a farmhouse while an army of flesh-eating zombies roams the countryside, deflates all genre clichés.

September 19, 2007 | Full Review…

Over its short, furious course, the picture violates so many strong taboos -- cannibalism, incest, necrophilia -- that it leaves audiences giddy and hysterical.

September 19, 2007 | Full Review…

I felt real terror in that neighborhood theater last Saturday afternoon. I saw kids who had no resources they could draw upon to protect themselves from the dread and fear they felt.

September 19, 2007 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Night of the Living Dead

Romero's first film - and his first zombie movie - is creepy, gory and realistic, with an extremely disturbing atmosphere, an incredibly sharp sociopolitical commentary and a terrifying ending, even though the acting is not that good and the plot feels a bit repetitive.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

A family, a man, and a woman hold up in a farmhouse as they try to survive an attack of zombies. I should forgive this 1968 classic for its poor special effects, its misogyny, its predictable character types, it plot holes, its overwrought performances, and its lack of any ethical raison d'etre. But I don't. The female characters are all useless fools, and why doesn't the old lady in the attic ever wake up and attack the group of survivors? If the dead are walking and she's dead, why isn't she walking? Was her brain damaged? If so, that wasn't clear. Overall, while it's a horror classic, there have been improvements on this genre that have made it archaic.

Jim Hunter
Jim Hunter

Super Reviewer

With some visually impressive images for it's time, and being one of the first films to have a boarded up home, fighting zombies away, "Night of the Living Dead," to me, was the spark of the genre. So many good films have come from this genre, and even dating all the way back to this picture, it's terrific entertainment. Although it becomes a tad slow at times, it still manages to hold your attention well and send chills down your spine with it's practical effects. The acting is solid for it's time and the story is well played out, but the most commendable thing about this film is it's direction. George A. Romero truly knows how to handle his actors, and each zombie does not feel out of place. All around, it's a great film, albeit simple. "Night of the Living Dead" sets a bright future for this filmmaker!

KJ Proulx
KJ Proulx

Super Reviewer

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