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A horror to get your teeth into

PUBLISHED: 15:05 05 March 2008 | UPDATED: 17:10 16 August 2010

THE founder of the zombie slasher movie George A. Romero brings the genre up to date with this inspired combination of blood-splattered horror and biting satire. For this, the fifth film in his Dead series, the veteran director

DIARY OF THE DEAD

Cert 18

THE founder of the zombie slasher movie George A. Romero brings the genre up to date with this inspired combination of blood-splattered horror and biting satire.

For this, the fifth film in his Dead series, the veteran director has opted for a Blair Witch-style cinema vérité take on the classic zombie apocalypse formula he began in 1968 with Night of the Living Dead.

The film is presented as the self-produced work of Pittsburgh University students Debra (Michelle Morgan) and her boyfriend Jason (Josh Close).

While attempting to make a mummy movie the couple and their student friends get wind of a zombie invasion via a radio newsflash. At first they reject the report as nonsense but it quickly becomes apparent that the news is very real and Jason decides he is going to capture the whole thing in all its gory detail and upload everything the TV companies won't showonto the web.

In keeping with the 'home-made' concept, the film has a very low-budget home-edited handycam feel, but Romero makes the limitations work for him in ways many lesser directors attempting similar things have failed to.

The set pieces are endlessly inventive as the student crew film the lurching zombies taking over the university campus and hospital wards.

The gore-fest continues as they chow down on the severed appendages of those too slow or too stupid to get out of their way.

By combining the fear and paranoia that comes with the constant threat of zombie attacks with the mass media scepticism and DIY reporting attitude of the current generation of bloggers and

Youtubers, 68-year-old Romero has proved he still has what it takes to make relevant, thought-provoking films and drags the zombie blueprint kicking and screaming into the 21st century l Diary of the Dead opens in cinemas on Friday.

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