Survival Of The Dead (2010)
George A. Romero's latest film 'Survival of the Dead' is being hailed as a neo western in the often tech-based, zombie genre.
Romero, a pioneer in the horror industry, has taken elements from The Big Country, a classic film starring Charlton Heston and Gregory Peck set in the Old West about a New Englander that gets caught between two family's land feud. His Director of Photography, Adam Swica (from Diary of the Dead) and the rest of his primary crew all viewed the film to figure out ways to add flavor.
The film opens with Crocket disbanding the platoon due to poor leadership which has cost them numerous men. Crocket, his best friend Tomboy, a gun-loving lesbian, and Cisco, a 'Rico Sauve' reject, then band together in an all-for-one road trip of their own. Along the way they pick up a teenage boy who tells them about a video he's found on the internet featuring Captain Courageous who promises an island free of the Zombie horde that has plagued the earth since the original Night of the Living Dead.
The movie itself follows Sgt. Crocket who made a small cameo in the previous film in the Romero series, Diary of the Dead, as the military leader who robs the college kids citing a dog-eat-dog logic behind his methods.
Ever willing to take a risk, Crocket sends the group into the Captain's trap as he's been looking to build up a posse to take on his life-long nemesis, Seamus Muldoon. Muldoon has been trying to haphazardly teach the undead residents of Plum Island how to consume something other than human flesh in an effort make them human once more. Capt. Patrick O'Flynn, determined to take out Muldoon for banishing him from Plum, converts Crocket to his side when his best friend is killed by cross fire from Muldoon's ranch hands. Janet, O'Flynn's only living daughter, begs her father to put his differences behind him, so that the two families can finally coexist in harmony.
Crocket is portrayed as an anti-hero in a cast of characters with questionable morals and personal motives. In true Romero-style, those who pit themselves as heroes are often the first to die, but not before those who've lost a sense of compassion. Survival of the Dead continues to move the Dead series into new territory that Diary couldn't touch, and promotes Romero's stellar independent-style in an industry congested by big budget, no brain films.