Saturday Matinee: The Return of the Living Dead



“The Return of the Living Dead” (1985) was written and directed by Dan O’Bannon (writer of “Dark Star” and “Alien”), and remains among the all-time horror/comedy classics. Unlike typical zombie film scenarios, this one is set off by bumbling employees who release military-grade toxic waste inexplicably stored in the basement of a medical storage facility. The girlfriend of one of the employees and her punk rocker friends end up at the scene and find themselves under siege from reanimated bodies in the storage facility and the neighboring cemetery. While zombie apocalypse films are a dime a dozen today, Return of the Living Dead still has an edge thanks to it’s nihilistic slapstick humor and biting social satire. Four sequels followed Return of the Living Dead, none of them nearly as good.

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