The Crazies (2009)

A small Mid-Western town is struck by an infectious virus that causes its inhabitants to lose their minds and begin ruthlessly slaughtering their neighbors until the military is able to intervene and "eliminate" the problem. What made Romero's 1973 version of the film so effective is the context in which it was made, in a frightful era following Vietnam where the threat of global terror and biological warfare loomed overhead. Romero was one of the first to tackle these fears through the safety net of the genre, whereas Eisner's update comes decades later when the threats have all but been eliminated and the theme has been retold countless times. Although each of the cast members provide serviceable performances, the poor attempts at humor, inane dialog, and empty plotting make this a chore to watch. What's worse, the lapses in logic and unlikely timing of events also make the film feel rushed and disorganized. Throwing in some mild gore simply isn't enough to cover these repeated flaws. THE CRAZIES remake is far too generic, too tame, and too shallow to leave any lasting effect on the genre.

Rating: 6/10.

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  1. Maybe I'm alone on this, but I never saw the original as a great film. I found it rather dull and disappointing. The remake wasn't anything to write home about either, mind you, but at least it had some pretty things to look at. It was a suitable 2:00 AM feature at the local drive-in.


  2. the original is ok, but the remake is pretty kick-ass

  3. I actually agree with both of you regarding the original, it is a slow burn and not nearly as effective as NotLD, but for this remake to even be justified, it had to have some sort of social and political backdrop for it to be effective. I just got tired of the expected scares and the tedious scenes of the three survivors walking, driving, or hiding for most of the film when they werent spouting off one-liners.

  4. I agree with your review. I always thought the original had some good ideas that weren't executed the greatest. For that it was a good film to be remade. Unfortunately it wasn't a great remake.

  5. Like most George A. Romero films - THE CRAZIES was rubbish. The remake improves on it immeasurably.

  6. Good God what an awfull movie. Maybe I'm burned out on zombie flicks, but the actors were wasted on this film. Where is the depth lying in this film? IT is SOOO shallow ( nothing like 28 days). The ending is garbage too. For ONCE I'd like to see a movie go a different direction.

  7. I like the original and feel its a well done follow up to NOTLD. Romero's movies of the period have that documentary quality to them that makes you feel like you're witnessing something real. The remake I saw in the theater and enjoyed it, but for different reasons. At first, it was kind of meandering, but once the survivors got on the road, it picked up considerably.

    Speaking of 28 DAYS LATER, this Italian movie I watched the other night called PRIMAL RAGE (1988) appears to have possibly been an unacknowledged inspiration.