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George A. Romero had to have known he was on to something when he made Night of the Living Dead.  Even if he didn’t, to be coined the “Godfather of Zombies” must have felt well deserved.  These days he isn’t the only one making them anymore, and it seems zombie popularity has spread just as quickly as the virus does in the films’ plots.  From movies that span over 40 years, zombies seem to have taken over as entertainment that can’t go wrong.  Especially in the past decade, the films have really picked up with the last few years going “zombie nuts” with new films (and even a hit TV show).  What is it about these films that audiences adore so much?   Maybe it has something to do with a combination of a bad economy and then the idea of an apocalypse washing all that away.  Either way, it looks as if these cannibalistic walking corpses are here to stay.

Let’s take a look at some of the best movies of the genre that made it happen…
 

Night of the Living Dead (1968)

This was George A. Romero’s legacy to the zombie genre.   A first of its kind, black and white thriller about a strange radiation that cause corpses to rise from the dead and centers around a group of survivors that take shelter in a farmhouse.    Despite its age, low budget, yet realistic and chilling storyline – it manages to go down as one of the creepiest of zombie flicks.
 

Dawn of the Dead (1978)

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Romero decided to add a second film to his arsenal and hit pay dirt.   The film is about some SWAT team members and some survivors who take refuge in a shopping mall.   It held its own back then and still does today.
 

28 Days Later (2002)

Fast-forward a couple of decades and a few cheesy zombie flicks later, and finally came a film that changed the way we saw dead people.  This time directed by a newcomer to the living dead, Danny Boyle, the film also delivered a new plot and centers in London where an epidemic, spawned from crazed monkeys, infects humans and turns them into cannibals.  They were much faster and stronger than the original slow moving zombies that Romero made famous.  These changes made a turning point in the zombie genre and made the living dead much scarier to deal with.
 

Resident Evil (2002)

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Based on the popular video game, which was fairly creepy to play in itself, the film stars an ass-kicking Milla Jovovich and paid homage to its fleet of gamers.  It also gave the zombie fanatics a great living dead flickaroo for their collections.
 

Dawn of the Dead (2004)

A remake of Romero’s 1978 film in which director Zack Snyder took the new age zombie and updated the original plot with some new age cinematography.  The outcome was a much more intense version of the old film and was received well by fans. There are plenty of chilling scenes and close calls that put audiences on the edge of their seats. Especially the scene of the large lady in a wheel barrow – which will make you cry for mama.
 

Shaun of the Dead (2004)

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A humorous take on the living dead movies which centers on an average guy dealing with the typical day to day troubles while finding himself in the middle of a zombie apocalypse.  The film won over audiences as it creatively mimicks the daily lives of regular people as “zombie-like”.
 

28 Weeks Later (2007)

A second edition of the first, but with a new director and cast – the film continues where the first left off, now 28 weeks later from the zombie epidemic.  The U.S. Army is now helping London rebuild but the plan goes haywire and soon enough the crazed virus begins spreading again, causing chaos.
 

Zombieland (2009)

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It’s hard to go wrong with Woody Harrelson and Emma Stone – and together they pull off a fairly entertaining and witty comedy about a zombie outbreak.  It’s about a shy student (Jesse Eisenberg) who is trying to reach his family in Ohio and runs into a lippy, gun-wielding tough guy (Harrelson) who is hilariously in search of the last twinkie.  A memorable scene involves Bill Murray as…well, Bill Murray!