Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Crazies (1973)

Director: George A. Romero

Starring: Lane Carroll, Will MacMillan, Harold Wayne Jones, Lloyd Hollar

More info: IMDb

Tagline: All hell is about to break loose.

Plot: The military attempts to contain a man made combat virus that causes death and permanent insanity in those infected, as it overtakes a small Pennsylvania town.

My rating: 7.5/10

Will I watch it again? Yeah.

Featured on Stephen Romano Presents Shock Festival (part of the TRAILER TRASH PROJECT)

There's a sense of realism that Romero brings to this that makes it feel organic, alive and honest. The first half of the film flies off the rails with its rapid dialogue, editing and documentary feel. There's a palatable sense of chaos. That he's able to sustain it for so long is remarkable. So it's only natural that when we get a chance to breath a little bit, when our 'heroes' escape into the woods, that it's going feel slow and draggy. Perhaps the second half is a little too drawn out. It doesn't matter 'cause it's still a great piece of 70s film making.

I'm a HUGE fan of CLOSE ENCOUNTERS OF THE THIRD KIND (1977) and there are some striking vibes used in that film that are found here. The urgency and the way the stories are inter cut between the government and the civilians are very similar not to mention the helicopter chase scene.

Romero does very well with the low budget. There are some sketchy performances but then there are quite a few excellent ones, the kind you get from using non-actors who feel like real people making natural choices with their words. Overall, it's a very good film that deserves far better than that shit remake earlier this year. Avoid that one and go with original.

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