Night of the Living Dead (1968)
Director: George A. Romero
Stars: Duane Jones, Judith O'Dea, Karl Hardman, Marilyn Eastman, Keith Wayne, Judith Ridley, Bill Cardille, Kyra Schon
George A. Romero's Night of the Living Deadis a national treasure; shot on a shoestring budget in and around Evans City, Pennsylvania, the zombie classic stands as a crucial milestone for independent cinema, an untouchable gem amongst horror purists, and an intelligent, thought-provoking time capsule from the Civil Rights era. Not bad for a movie about corpses devouring humans.
Ask The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman or original series showrunner Frank Darabont-George A. Romero's genre-defining Night of the Living Dead is the most important zombie movie of all time. It's also one of the most important horror movies of all time.
The set-up is basic: Seven random people barricade themselves inside a nondescript farmhouse as flesh-eating corpses stalk around outside. Independently made back in 1968, Night Of The Living Dead pushed horror's boundaries with extraordinarily graphic scenes of cannibalism and the ballsy choice to have a black leading man during the Civil Rights era.
Above all else, though, it's still scary as hell. —MB