Ana awakens to a world that has been overrun by the undead, narrowly escaping the ravenous hordes by teaming up with a small band of survivors who have taken refuge in the local shopping mall. Zack Snyder gives DAWN OF THE DEAD a terrifying new update in his 2004 remake, changing the game of zombie cinema forever.
In an effort to make his villains even more frightening, Snyder allows the creatures to take off at top-speeds after our heroes. Now, we not only have to worry about the overwhelming numbers of the undead, but outrunning them as well! While this has become the source of much controversy with fans, it isn't as illogical as many make it out to be. The infection is only a day old when our movie begins, so the bodies of the deceased have had no chance to degenerate. If fueled by an insatiable bloodlust, it would only seem reasonable that these killing machines would attack with a primitive rage.
Our new set of heroes quickly garner our support, with Ving Rhames playing the tough policeman Kenneth, Sarah Polley as the sharp and resourceful Ana, and Jake Weber trying to hold things together as Michael. Each of the side characters are just as enjoyable as well, and help to create a dichotomy in personal politics that drives the internal conflict. The human element is great, but where the new DAWN OF THE DEAD succeeds most is in the scares. Synder creates many unexpected and exhilarating moments of adrenaline-pumping excitement, pitting his characters against insurmountable odds in the fight to survive. The zombies are like rabid dogs, bursting through doors and ripping their victims to shreds. It is a very horrifying experience, but one that also delivers on suspense as well as gore.
Regardless of one's feelings when it comes to the proper speed of a zombie, DAWN OF THE DEAD proves to be one of the strongest remakes in Horror to come out of the 2000's. It draws from Romero's basic premise, but creates something unique entirely that fans are sure to appreciate, but moreover, it is as scary as it is purely entertaining.
Movies like DAWN OF THE DEAD:
28 DAYS LATER, DAY OF THE DEAD, LAND OF THE DEAD.