Deathdream (1974)

A mother's wish brings a Vietnam vet back from the war, but he doesnt come back alive..This dark retelling of the classic "Monkey's Paw" tale proves to be a biting social commentary on the devastating effect the war had on the soldiers returning home and being marginalized by the society they fought to protect. It touches on the psychological damage, drug addiction, and dissociative disorders that many of the soldiers were left with after experiencing the horrors of war, all cleverly told through the zombie metaphor. Though the film is very slow paced, it sets up for several genuinely terrifying sequences through its chilling score and an excellent performance by Richard Backus. I liked the film much, much more on the second viewing, having missed the clear intention of it originally. It is a smart, original zombie effort that transcends the genre, highly recommended!

Rating: 8/10.

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  1. Now this is another flick I love. Very creepy and smart, and has a genuinely heartbreaking ending. Does for the zombie genre what Romero's Martin did for vampires.

  2. Finally, another Martin lover! When I met George last year of all of his titles I had him sign Martin, since it has quickly become one of my favorite Romero films.

    On the first pass through, I must not have been actively watching Deathdream because I missed most of the metaphors for what was going on, so with this second viewing I was able to draw out the social undertones (even though they are in plain sight).

  3. Martin is truly a masterpiece, but is definitely underrated outside his zombie series. Thats cool that you met Romero, what's he like? I love listening to his commentaries, it's like sitting down with a cool uncle who tells great stories:-)

    When I first watched Deathdream, it was late at night, and I just got completely sucked into it. I just wish I could show it to my friends on the big screen, but I think it would go over their beer adled minds.

  4. George was very down to earth and humble, very appreciative of his fans. Fangoria has a cocktail party for the gold patrons after the convention on Saturdays where guests are allowed to come and have a beer with the fans, and unlike some of the guests George was completely open to taking pictures and talking openly with everyone. It was really awesome, unlike divas like Ken Foree, who couldnt even be bothered to break away from his conversation with Lew Temple to say hi to us when we were at his booth. I have a pic of us with George in the picture albums, should be in the 2008 album =D