The Return of the Living Dead


The Return of the Living Dead

Critics Consensus

A punk take on the zombie genre, Return of the Living Dead injects a healthy dose of '80s silliness to the flesh consuming.



Total Count: 35


Audience Score

User Ratings: 55,249
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Movie Info

When a mysterious military chemical gets into the atmosphere it ends up soaking into a cemetery down in bayou land and the bodies are brought to life. It seems that after their healthy snoozes, these creeps have developed quite an appetite, but not for just any old food. These hungry zombies want human brains!


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Critic Reviews for The Return of the Living Dead

All Critics (35) | Top Critics (1) | Fresh (32) | Rotten (3)

Audience Reviews for The Return of the Living Dead

  • Dec 11, 2017
    Return of the Living Dead is zany, gross and really quite messy throughout. A madcap, punk-fest of a zombie flick that isn't afraid to gross out it's audience and fling guts out of every corner of the screen wherever it can. Return of the Living Dead interesting coined the phrase, "braaaaains" associated with the zombie genre and is memorable not just because of this, but also because of it's cast of dedicated actors who go above and beyond to deliver some of the cheesiest yet enthusiastic performances seen in any mid-eighties horror film. It's almost a love letter to punk and Dan O'Bannon was just that in his attempt to make a zombie film that would stand the test of time. It's dated by today's standards, but the humour involved is timeless.
    Harry W Super Reviewer
  • Mar 17, 2015
    So. Much. Damn. Fun. The Return of the Living Dead always takes me back to being a teenager. In a good way. Trash is taking off her clothes again.
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • Feb 27, 2013
    The movie that introduced brain-eating zombies is a self-aware parody of the genre with plenty of randomness and awkward humor aplenty. Throw some cool gore and disgusting effects into the mix and you got an instant success.
    Francisco G Super Reviewer
  • Oct 09, 2012
    I'm still waiting for a zombie film where bathsalts are the cause for the living dead, but I guess we'll have to make due with what we have right now. Return of the Living Dead is a 1985 horror comedy about zombies. Contrary to popular belief, this isn't a sequel to Night of the Lving Dead, though it does pay homage to it in some scenes. The zombies are brought to life after two dumbasses working in a medical warehouse let loose a weird chemical into the air. Now the zombies have risen and it makes for one hell of a fight. The zombies in this film are different from the George Romero zombies in certain aspects. To start, the zombies in this ones crave brains rather than just human flesh. Their appearance is also different, but the special effects and makeup make them look fantastic. Some of the zombies in this one are completely mutilated and look disgusting. It really helps make for some really funny moments in the film. It's something of a comedy as well. A lot of the characters are really funny and memorable and it's partly due to the acting. Every actor in this movie is really good and a solid cast isn't something you come by too often in horror films. I was also surprised at how well written some of the dialogue was. Most horror films usually have average dialogue that isn't really interesting, but this movie doesn't really have its moments where I was bored. There's no contrived build up or forced characters, the movie just feels right. I don't really know how else to put it. This is the type of horror film that can please most anyone. If you like horror comedies, gore, naked chicks, and zombies, this movie will not disappoint you. It's my personal favorite zombie film ever made and I know that there are plenty of other zombie films to be made, but I doubt if they have the charm that this one has. I'd like to make this review longer, but it's one of those films where you just have to see for yourself instead of looking at reviews online.
    Tyler R Super Reviewer

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