Panic

Bill Robinson: "I'd say I'm a pretty darn good father. My father tried to eat me, I don't remember trying to eat Timmy."

Helen Robinson:
"Bill, just because your father tried to eat you, does that mean we all have to be unhappy ... forever?"

Fido
2006 zombie fantasy

"It has been established that persons who have recently died have been returning to life and committing acts of murder. A widespread investigation of funeral homes, morgues, and hospitals has concluded that the unburied dead have been returning to life and seeking human victims. It's hard for us here to be reporting this to you, but it does seem to be a fact."

Newscaster
1968 documentary Night of the Living Dead

Zombie movies

  • 28 Days Later, 2002
  • Alien Dead, 1980
  • Army of Darkness, 1993
  • The Astro-Zombies, 1969
  • Braindead, 1992
  • Bride of Re-Animator, 1991
  • Bubba's Chili Parlor, 2005
  • The Children, 1980
  • Children of the Living Dead, 2001
  • Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things, 1972
  • Chopper Chicks in Zombietown, 1991
  • Daddy, Kiss Me, 2003
  • Dance of the Dead, 2008
  • Day of the Dead, 1985 and 2008
  • Day of the Dead 2: Contagiu, 2005
  • Dawn of the Dead, 1978 and 2004
  • Dead & Breakfast, 2004
  • Dead and Deader, 2006
  • Dead Clowns, 2003
  • Diary of the Dead, 2007
  • The Drunken Dead Guy, 2005
  • Ed and His Dead Mother, 2006
  • Fido, 2006
  • FVZA: Federal Vampire and Zombie Agency, 2009
  • Hard Rock Zombies, 1985
  • The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies, 1964
  • I Was a Teenage Zombie, 1987
  • Knight of the Living Dead, 2005
  • Kung Fu Zombie, 1982
  • Night of the Living Dead, 1968 and 1990
  • Shaun of the Dead, 2004
  • A Virgin Among the Living Dead, 1971
  • White Zombie, 1932
  • Zombieland, 2009
  • Zombie Vegetarians, 2004
  • Zombie Western: It Came for the West, 2006

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Hollywood Zombies

Moviemakers think they have this whole zombie thing figured out. Don't go into the basement alone. Don't go out at night alone. Don't let your zombie eat your neighbor. Don't believe everything you see.

From The Ghost Breakers,1940, with Bob Hope and Paulette Goddard

Let's face it, most zombie movies are no more grounded in reality than those teenage vampire flicks. If you believe that teen vampires sparkle, then we've got a lawn-mowing, dog-walking house zombie to sell you. Bonus: It'll even mow your lawn.

Bottom line on movie zombies: They're entertainment and escapism. They're not reality. But that's OK. Reality really bites. Instead of dissecting the errors in every zombie movie (we'd be here all day...), we've compiled a list of lessons they contain that will help you survive the horde.

Lesson 1: Don't go there

You know that shortcut through the woods, the deserted farmhouse ("They're coming to get you, Barbara!"), the scary dark basement? Yeah, the zombie movies have it right on that one. The woods aren't safe (but then, neither are the cities). The farmhouse does not have a phone you can use. And zombies can and will find you cowering in a basement. Remember the old song "Don't Fence Me In." Sing it to yourself before you consider going into a closed space you can't defend.

Lesson 2: Head for the barn

The barn, the toolshed, the machine shop. All good. Very good. We shouldn't have to tell you this, but it has something to do with tools that can chop or bludgeon. Barns and toolsheds have lots of those. And many zombies don't use tools, so you're unlikely to give them something to use against you.

Lesson 3: Nowhere is safe

This kinda goes without saying, but we're saying it anyhow. Zombies can and will get into any place there's fresh meat available. (That fresh meat, by the way, is YOU.) George Romero had this one completely right in Night of the Living Dead:

Ben: I'm telling you they can't get IN here! Harry Cooper: And I'm telling you they turned over our car! We were damn lucky to get away at all! Now you're telling me these things can't get through a lousy pile of wood?

Lesson 4: Always have a Plan B

The folks in Dawn of the Dead were facing a long-term zombie infestation, just like you are. They had to learn to adapt. Looking for ammo to feed your hungry shotgun but you can only find a bunch of bottles and some gasoline? Score! You've got yourself the makings of a first-class Molotov cocktail. If the zombies start getting smarter, you might need to move quickly. That's where Plan B comes in. Or Plan C. Think ahead while you still have a brain to think with.

Lesson 5: Shoot the ones you love

It's a hard, bitter truth. Your wife or husband or mom or grandpa may one day die and reanimate. Face it squarely. Man up. Blow granny's brains out with your .22. If it just happens to be your stepfather, even better.

Shaun: Mum, have you been bitten? Barbara: No... But Philip has. Shaun: Listen, Mum, what sort of state is he in? Barbara: Oh, he's fine. Bit under the weather. Shaun: I see. Ed: What's the deal? Shaun: [to Ed] We may have to kill my step-dad. (Shaun of the Dead)

The historical record

Night of the Living Dead may not be completely factual, but it does a good job of showing you the ins and outs of surviving a zombie infestation. You can watch it below or right click here to download it so you can watch it later. (Because of its usefullness as a training video, the movie is no longer copyrighted so you may download it freely).

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