[[quoteright:330:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Night_of_the_Living_Dead_affiche.jpg]]

->''"They're coming to get you, Barbra!"''

'''''Night of the Living Dead''''', a 1968 horror film directed by George A. Romero and written by Romero and John Russo, became one of the most influential horror films ever and inaugurated the ZombieApocalypse genre. Before ''Living Dead'', zombies had always been depicted as slavish [[VoodooZombie creatures of voodoo]] who obeyed their masters, but Romero did [[OurZombiesAreDifferent something completely different]]: he gave no explanation for their existence (besides a speculative HandWave about a space probe and [[NuclearNasty radioactive fallout]]), gave them no masters, and endowed them with an [[FleshEatingZombie insatiable appetite for the flesh of the living]]. He also showed the increasing tensions in American society in TheSixties; people had more to fear than zombies, but zombies easily presented the most visible threat.

This film is, despite its relatively recent vintage, in the PublicDomain as a result of its original theatrical distributor, the Walter Reade Organization, neglecting to place a copyright indication on the prints. In 1968, United States copyright law required a proper copyright notice in order for a work to properly secure and maintain its copyright. While the film ''did'' display such a notice on the title frames of its original title (''Night of the Flesh Eaters''), the notice ended up removed when the film changed titles, and by the time the filmmakers noticed, they could do nothing about it. Anyone with the resources to distribute the film can do so without legal repercussions thanks to its Public Domain status; as of 2006, the Internet Movie Database lists 23 different releases of the film on DVD and 19 on VHS. You can legally view or download the film for free on Internet sites such as [[http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2956447426428748010 Google Video]], [[http://www.archive.org/details/night_of_the_living_dead the Internet Archive]], and [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H91BxkBXttE YouTube]].

In 1999, Russo re-released the original 1968 film for its 30th anniversary (without Romero's involvement) with new footage and a new soundtrack. This altered version's continuity received a sequel in 2001 (''Children of the Living Dead'').

After ''Night of the Living Dead'' became an unexpected success, Romero and Russo discussed making a {{sequel}}, but after disagreeing on its direction, they each decided to do their own version. Romero made the equally-successful ''Film/DawnOfTheDead'' (and not-quite-as-successful ''Film/DayOfTheDead''), while Russo made his films more comedic with the ''Film/ReturnOfTheLivingDead'' pentalogy (which single-handedly introduced the concept of zombies eating brains). Both series have had modern sequels; Romero directed the fourth film of his franchise (''Land of the Dead'') in 2005, then made a quasi-reboot (''Film/DiaryOfTheDead'') and its sequel (''Film/SurvivalOfTheDead''), while Russo's ''Return of the Living Dead'' films strayed from 'comedic' to '{{Gorn}}'. All three of the films of Romero's original trilogy have received remakes, each with varying degrees of success (Romero himself wrote and produced the first remake of ''Night'', while close friend Creator/TomSavini directed). ''Night'' also received a second remake (filmed in [[ThreeDMovie 3D]]) in 2006, Romero had no involvement with this remake, which -- unlike Savini's more faithful adaptation -- departs fairly radically from the source material.

''Night of the Living Dead'' remains one of the most iconic horror films of all time, and numerous [[Film/ShaunOfTheDead movies]], [[Series/{{Angel}} television shows]], [[Franchise/ResidentEvil video games]], [[Literature/WorldWarZ books]], and [[Comicbook/TheWalkingDead comic books]] owe their origin to its gruesome black-and-white imagery.

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!! ''Night of the Living Dead'' contains examples of the following tropes:

* AbilityOverAppearance: Ben was not written to be black and Romero claims he only cast Duane Jones because he gave the best audition, rather than to make a point or be controversial.
** Inverted with Judith Ridley who played Judy. Producers were so struck by her beauty that they wrote a part for her.
* ActionGirl: The most notable change in Creator/TomSavini's remake was to upgrade Barbra from TheLoad.
* AssholeVictim: Harry Cooper.
* BerserkBoardBarricade: Ben throws up a whole bunch of them.
* BigBrotherBully: Johnny in the remake. He bullies Barbra in the car on the way to the cemetery and doesn't stop when they get there. In the original he is more whiny and teasing than actually malevolent.
* BittersweetEnding: In the (first) remake by Creator/TomSavini, [[spoiler:Barbra survives, but Ben doesn't. Harry also survives, but Barbra immediately executes him. Barbra's faith in humanity has been completely destroyed, causing her to say in regards to the dead, "We're them. We're them, and they're us."]]
* BlackDudeDiesFirst: Inverted -- [[spoiler:the black dude becomes the last man standing in the end...well, until he gets shot by the rednecks]].
* BlondeBrunetteRedhead: Helen (brunette), Judy Rose (blonde) and Barbra (redhead) in the remake.
* BoyishShortHair: Barbra in the remake. What a coincidence - this is also the film where she becomes an ActionGirl.
* BrickJoke: The gas pump key is forgotten about after [[spoiler: Tom and Judy get blown up]]. In the 1990 remake, [[spoiler: it shows up in the cellar at the end as a final irony]].
* BurnTheUndead: Fire is an effective means of dispatching the living dead and is recommended by the radio emergency broadcasts.
* CanonForeigner: Owen and Gerald Tovar, Jr in 3D version.
* CreatorCameo: George Romero appears as one of the TV reporters interviewing the military spokesmen in Washington.
* CreepyBasement: Subverted. The cellar is the one truly safe place... at least [[spoiler:until Karen turns]].
* CreepyCemetery: Site of the opening scene.
* CueTheSun: Subverted in the final scene.
* DamselInDistress: Barbra is often accused of being this, though she does succeed in running away from most of the zombies. It's just that when things calm down she goes slightly catatonic.
* DaylightHorror: Despite the movie obviously taking place mostly at night, the first time we see a zombie attack is during the day. [[spoiler:And Ben gets killed in the morning.]]
* DeathByAdaptation: Johnny and Barbra's mother in the remake. In the original it's their father's grave and their dialogue confirms that their mother is still alive. In the remake it's their mother's grave but no confirmation on whether or not their father is still alive.
* DeathBySex: To Judy and Tom in the 3D version.
* DecoyProtagonist: For the first quarter of the movie, it looks like Barbra's the protagonist. Then Ben shows up and she turns into TheLoad.
* DigitalDestruction: Many felt that the restoration job on the 30th Anniversary Edition was actually a little ''too'' effective and made the film's low budget painfully obvious, and that the murky public domain prints actually do a lot to enhance the film's mood. That's probably the least of the Anniversary Edition's problems...
* DownerEnding: [[spoiler: Everyone dies to the zombies except Ben because of their idiocy. Ben himself is mistaken for a zombie and shot dead by the militia group sweeping up the last of the zombies. On the bright side, [[RealityEnsues the zombie apocalypse got cleaned up pretty easily]]... until the sequels.]]
* DramaticThunder: The appearance of the first zombie in the cemetery is heralded by this.
* DumbBlonde: Judy in the 3D version. Barbra also spends most of her time in the first film being catatonic and hysterical.
* DutchAngle: Effectively employed at various points throughout the film.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: Unlike all of the following films, this one is in black and white, lacks the subtle humor of the sequels, and some of their action elements. However, the film works well without these elements. Most notably, there is an explanation given for the zombies (exotic radiation from an exploding space probe) and the first zombie seen (and several others afterwards) is also able to move fast (for a corpse), and the zombies are shown to think and display basic life preservation skills (such as avoiding fire, though they don't think much about cars).
* EverybodySmokes
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: It's a movie about a single night during which the dead become alive.
* ExtremelyShortTimespan: The title is not using the word "night" in a figurative sense.
* FanserviceExtra: There's a naked, undead woman shown prominently in two shots...
** FanDisservice: Well, she's undead.
* FinalGirl: Barbra, in the Savini and 3D versions.
* FireKeepsItDead: At the end, after the locals have gained control of the situation they burn the bodies of killed humans so they can't rise as zombies and "killed" zombies so they can't rise ''again''.
* FiveManBand: Creator/TomSavini's remake plays with the traditional roles:
** TheLeader: Ben takes charge but it's implied taking charge is all he can actually do to stop himself from going mad. He frequently dismisses other ideas and insists everyone stick to his plans. [[spoiler: Which it turns out, weren't good ideas at all]].
** TheLancer: Cooper is equally as stubborn as Ben and, instead of offering reasonable alternatives, insists that ''his'' way is the right one. The two of them pick fights simply because their egos won't allow them not to and other characters call them out on it.
** TheSmartGuy: Barbra. Initially falls to pieces but is able to eventually think clearly. She remains solid-minded while everyone else slowly goes mad. She suggests a plan that, if they had followed it, [[spoiler: they wouldn't have died]]. In this version it's her [[spoiler: who is the sole survivor]].
** TheBigGuy: Tom. He's probably the straightest example, being fleshed out as a local country boy who can handle a gun and is able to fix up the house. He ends up doubling as TheFace, often mediating between Ben and Cooper's rows.
** TheChick: Judy Rose takes over Barbra's original role as the ScreamingWoman instead of being calm and reasonable simply because she's a woman. However she reacts realistically to what's going on and becomes a little more proactive (going outside to get the gas pump keys, insisting that she drive the truck).
** TeamMom: Helen mostly mothers her own daughter but is dominated by her husband. However she eventually resists him in the name of doing what's best for her daughter.
* FromBadToWorse: Things ''really'' start going to hell beginning with [[spoiler:Tom and Judy's death]].
* FullFrontalAssault: As shown in the poster, there's a brief scene of a naked female zombie among the horde that invade the house. It's shown from behind so you don't really see much.
* GeorgeLucasAlteredVersion: John A. Russo's "30th Anniversary Edition", adding a new score, new special effects, and scenes shot 30 years after the original was released. Harry Knowles threatened to ban anyone who complimented this version on his ''Ain't It Cool News'' site.
* GetAHoldOfYourselfMan: At one point Barbra wigs out and tries to go out the front door to "get Johnny". When Ben stops her, she slaps his face, and he responds by ''punching'' hers. Subverted in that it actually sends her even further into shock and stupor.
* TheGlassesGottaGo: In the remake when Barbra is attacked by the zombie, she loses her glasses. Strangely she doesn't seem affected by this for the rest of the film.
* GoryDiscretionShot: Sometimes used, sometimes averted. Especially in the original, this shocked audiences who weren't expecting to see so much gore.
* GutPunch: The [[FamilyUnfriendlyDeath Family-Unfriendly Deaths]] of [[spoiler: Tom and Judy]] provides the page quote for that trope.
* HalfemptyTwoshot: In the Savini remake, something does lunge into the frame, but from the wrong side.
* HeWhoFightsMonsters: [[spoiler:Barbra]] in the remake.
* HeroicBSOD: Barbra. In the remake, however, this is subverted when [[spoiler:she becomes just as much a survivor as Ben and lives through the end]].
* HollywoodDarkness: When the TV reporter is interviewing Sheriff [=McClelland=], they're in bright sunlight even though it's supposed to be the middle of the night. Less blatantly, the scene where Tom and Judy ride out to the gas pump with Ben was clearly shot either just after dawn or just before dusk.
* HorrorDoesntSettleForSimpleTuesday: The film takes place the day of the dreaded switch to *gasp* daylight savings time.
* HumansAreBastards: Just watch that ending.
* IncongruouslyDressedZombie: Undressed, rather: Romero had a nude model wandering around with a morgue ID tag tied to her wrist.The zombie with a heroin needle still in his arm in the remake.
* InfantImmortality: See UndeadChild below.
* {{Irony}}: Ben spends the remake arguing why it's better to stay upstairs while Cooper does likewise with the cellar. [[spoiler: Ben ends up fleeing to the cellar while Cooper goes to the attic. Ben dies and Cooper lives.]]
** Also Cooper orders Helen to go back down into the cellar in the third act, wanting to keep her safe. [[spoiler: At this point their daughter has become a zombie.]] The irony comes that if Helen had stayed upstairs [[spoiler: she probably would have survived]].
* {{Jerkass}}: Cooper, in both versions. Johnny seems to be a bit of one as well.
* JerkassHasAPoint: Cooper was right about barricading the basement, [[spoiler:as evidenced that Ben (the one most against it) survives the night that way]].
* KillEmAll: [[spoiler:None of the main characters make it through the film alive.]]
** Subverted in the remake, [[spoiler: Barbara manages to survive.]]
* KillItWithFire: Fire is one of the only things zombies are afraid of.
* KillTheCutie: And how.
* LargeHam: Cooper was already one in the first film, and becomes an even bigger one in the remake. As Mike Nelson put it in his commentary, "It's an interesting acting choice to start with inexplicable rage and just build from there."
* TheLoad: Barbra is generally useless in the original. In the 1990 remake, [[ActionGirl she doesn't stay useless for very long]].
* LosingAShoeInTheStruggle: Barbra loses ''both'' shoes while fleeing the cemetery zombie.
* MadnessMantra: "You can't start the car, Johnny has the key."
** "Oh, is it ten to three? We won't have long to wait, now, it's ten to three..."
* MeaningfulBackgroundEvent: The very first zombie in the movie can be seen shambling around the cemetery well before it attacks Barbra and Johnny.
* MeaningfulName: The house in Creator/TomSavini's remake has the name "M. Celeste", in reference to the famous GhostShip ''Mary Celeste'', whose crew disappeared without explanation in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.
* NewscasterCameo: Bill Cardille, a Pittsburgh TV personality best known as HorrorHost "Chilly Billy", appears as the TV reporter interviewing Sheriff [=McClelland=].
** Charles Craig, who plays the primary newscaster in the film, had real-life experience reporting the news on a Cincinnati radio station.
* NotAZombie
* NotHisSled:
** Used ''twice'' in the Savini remake with the Downer Ending.
** The first attack was changed to remain surprising. In the original, the [[MeaningfulBackgroundEvent man shambling in the background]] is a zombie that attacks Barbra (quite a shocker in 1968). In the remake the man is an alive but deeply confused hearse driver. Then a zombie appears out of nowhere to attack ''Johnny''.
* NotQuiteSavedEnough: This film is perhaps the prototypal example. In a movie filled with groundbreaking departures from tradition, this trope was perhaps the most significant. [[spoiler: After a heroic struggle, Ben is left the only survivor of a night of mayhem and horror in the farmhouse. The next morning he awakes to the sound of a rescue party approaching the house, but as he peers through the boarded-up windows for a glimpse of his potential saviors, they mistake him for just another zombie and perfunctorily shoot him in the head. The movie ends with a sequence of still images of Ben's lifeless, anonymous corpse impaled on a meat hook and dragged to a human bonfire. No one ever knows who he was or what he went through to survive the night . . . of the living dead.]]
* NotUsingTheZWord: The undead cannibals are referred to as "[[OurGhoulsAreCreepier ghouls]]" by the radio/TV people and "those ''things''" by the main characters, but the word "zombie" is never used. In fact, Romero and Russo themselves never thought of the creatures as zombies, since the popular idea of zombie-as-cannibal had not yet been formed, making this a proto-TropeMaker.
* {{Novelization}}: Written by John Russo. Russo also wrote a sequel novel titled ''Return of the Living Dead'' where the ghouls return following a catastrophic bus crash, which was later the (very loose) basis for the film of the same name.
* NuclearNasty: Played straight or lampshaded, depending on how you look at the argument between the scientists in the original, after one of them mentions the satellite crash.
* OffscreenMomentOfAwesome: Ben's story of running down zombies with a truck, which would clearly have been far beyond the film's budget to actually show.
* OminousMusicBoxTune
* OnlySaneMan: Ben is the only remotely competent character in the original movie that actually tries to fight back against the zombies and survive, in stark contrast to the [[TooDumbToLive raving idiocy]] and [[TheLoad uselessness]] of the other characters.
* OurZombiesAreDifferent: This film invented the modern perception of zombies as cannibalistic monsters - before it, they were [[VoodooZombie voodoo slaves]]. A keen viewer will also notice that some of the zombies in the beginning don't perfectly fit the "slow, dumb shambler" model that is associated with Romero's zombies. Namely, they reach for a car's door handle, they pick up a rock to smash against a window, they deliberately smash a car's headlights, and oh yeah, one of them ''runs''. [[spoiler:The Coopers' zombified daughter]] also uses a garden shovel to kill [[spoiler:her mother]], and several zombies pick up tools, such as the aforementioned rock, and one uses Ben's discarded makeshift torch to break down the door.
* PeekABooCorpse: One of the more frightening examples, considering how well it was done with 60s SFX.
* PracticalVoiceover: Radio and television broadcasts are used throughout the film to outline the contours and extent of the zombie outbreak.
* RealityEnsues: While averted if one takes it as written that ''Film/DawnOfTheDead'' directly follows this movie, the movie itself plays it straight. Near-mindless slow, clumsy shamblers who can easily be dispatched with a burning torch or a heavy blow to the skull and whose only real strength is in numbers might pose a threat to a dysfunctional, ill-equipped and just plain-out uncooperative group, like Ben's, but against a disciplined, organised, well-equipped group? They get taken down quickly and easily -- the ending only works out the way it does because humans ''elsewhere'' easily mop up their zombies and are methodically sweeping out and terminating all roving zombies they find.
** If you think about it, that's actually a subtle element of the horror; the television and radio reports make it clear that people are legitimately fighting off and containing their zombies elsewhere, yet these poor bastards are unlucky enough (and/or dumb enough) that they can't do the same and end up as zombie chow.
* RecycledSoundtrack: The original film's score consisted of stock music from Capitol Records' "Hi-Q" production library, much of which had previously been used in other film and TV soundtracks. The opening credits theme, for instance, was originally used in a ''Ben Casey'' episode; other cues were lifted from such earlier B-movies as ''Film/TeenagersFromOuterSpace'' and ''Film/TheHideousSunDemon''.
* RedHerring: In the original, Barbra is near-catatonic and then spacey. She feels warm, says so and takes her jacket off. She flinches at the fire when Mrs. Cooper lights her cigarette. Despite all this, she ''doesn't'' turn into a zombie before getting dragged out of the house.
* ScareChord: A number of them are used throughout the film.
* ScreamingWoman: Barbra.
* SelfMadeOrphan: [[spoiler:Zombie Karen eats her father, then kills and (presumably) eats her mother.]]
* ShadowDiscretionShot: [[spoiler:Karen's murder of her mother]] features both this and GoryDiscretionShot.
* TheSheriff: Sheriff [=McClelland=], who heads the local zombie-hunting posse.
* ShootOutTheLock: Upon arrival at the gas pump, the key does not work. Ben simply shoots the lock. One must assume he was inwardly pondering why he didn't think about this sooner when griping about being unable to find the key.
* ShowWithinAShow: In the 3D remake, various characters are shown [[RecursiveReality watching the original 1968 film]] on television.
* ShoutOut: Johnny imitates Creator/BorisKarloff for his "They're coming to get you, Barbra!" line.
** Bill Hinzman, who played the cemetery zombie, based his shambling gait on Karloff's portrayal of [[Film/{{Frankenstein 1931}} Frankenstein's monster]].
** The 1990 remake has a couple shout-outs to the original: when Karen eats her mother, we momentarily see a spade on the wall similar to the one in the original, and the reporter is also the same actor playing the same character from the original as well.
* TheSiege
* SlasherFilm: 3D version have DeathBySex , DumbBlonde and TheStoner.
* SoleSurvivor: Probably the best-known ''subversion'' in film history.
* SparedByTheAdaptation: Barbra in the original is dragged off and implied to be devoured by a horde of zombies (among which, her brother is included) during the final siege. In the 1990 remake, she becomes an ActionSurvivor.
* TheStinger: A shot of a burning pile of bodies follows the end credits.
* TheStoner: Everyone in 3D remake.
* TaxidermyTerror: Barbra wanders into the house's trophy room, where the stuffed heads seriously freak her out. Although not as much as the corpse. Or the zombie. Or Ben.
* TeethClenchedTeamwork: The houseful of strangers are forced to work together until conflict ultimately [[AHouseDivided breaks them apart]]. This became a defining point of zombie movies, as the living's lack of ability to work together ultimately proves their downfall. Some have interpreted this aspect of the film's story as Romero's metaphor for the difficulties faced by America in the VietnamWar, or the West generally in the ColdWar.
** One powerful FridgeBrilliance interpretation has the film as a metaphor for the UsefulNotes/CivilRightsMovement. A black man taking the role of hero, variously opposed, aided, betrayed, or ignored in his struggle to survive against the zombie hordes by the white people around him.
* ThoseTwoGuys: Tom and Judy are pretty separated from the other characters and the story at large. They hardly interact with anyone else but each other, and the only thing very memorable about them is [[spoiler:their fiery explosive death and the sloppy zombie clean-up crew]].
* ThematicSeries: The sequels that spawned off this movie were all loosely connected.
* TitleOfTheDead: While not the first example of the type, this was certainly the TropeCodifier, and countless zombie movies since have used some variant, either as a ShoutOut (''ShaunOfTheDead'') or to FollowTheLeader (''TheReturnOfTheLivingDead'' series).
* TooDumbToLive:
** Jesus, [[spoiler:Tom]], how hard is it to work a damned gas pump? Admittedly the hose was too short, he jerked the nozzle towards the truck, the hose ran out, and his hand hit the trigger spraying the gas - but anyone who has been to an unfamiliar gas pump ''once'' knows to stop the car close enough that even a short hose can reach. He parks a good 20 feet away!
** Granted, shooting a lock off a ''gas pump'' is something a sensible person would probably prefer to avoid if they have a choice.
** That's nothing compared to Ben ''leaving a torch right next to the car where gas can easily be spilled on it'' rather than placing it further ahead of them in front of the zombies!
** In the 30th Anniversary Edition, Reverend Hicks -- who, by the way, is near a dozen or so guys shooting at the zombies with actual weapons -- thinks that ''preaching'' at one of the zombies (the one that Barbra and Johnny encountered at the start of the film, in fact) will achieve something. Needless to say, it doesn't, and he gets bitten before the other guys take the zombie out. Subverted, as Hicks [[KarmaHoudini somehow proves immune to being bitten]].
** Everyone, in a sense. The zombies are slow and could be easily outrun, instead of doing the smart thing and running away, they decide to board the entire house up and let the zombies pile up. Did they ever think about the possibility of the zombies breaking in and having no way out, other than isolating themselves somewhere until there's no place left to run? [[spoiler:Thankfully, this is averted in the remake, where Barbara suggests running away on foot while there's still time. No one listens to her, and when the zombies break in, she runs away and survives on her own.]].
* TookALevelInBadass: [[spoiler:Barbra]] in the remake, in pointed contrast with her original incarnation. Judy Rose was heading this way too. She spent most of the film as a ScreamingWoman before eventually getting a hold of herself, calling out Ben and Cooper for their stupid arguing and offering to drive the truck to the gas pump (as opposed to the original where she just wandered outside and had to come along).
** [[spoiler: The Original's Barbara was no slouch either. She saved Mrs. Cooper from the Zombies that grabbed at her. At the cost of her own life.]]
* TookALevelInJerkass: While Cooper was an unlikable asshole in the original, he was still willing to help the others out after some grumbling, even if his fear and anger got the better of him towards the end, and he came across more as a scared, angry man out of his wits with fear and confusion. In the remake he is an utterly loathsome and useless slimeball.
* TragicMistake: Ben, our hero, believes that they must defend the house from the zombies. Harry Cooper, our unsympathetic antagonist, insists that they should flee to the basement and barricade the basement door. Ben wins the argument, but Cooper was right. Ben's plan to defend the house leads to disaster, and after everyone else is killed he does in fact flee to the basement, where he survives the zombies.
* UglyGuyHotWife: The Coopers, in both versions.
* UnbuiltTrope: The zombies are always called "ghouls", and are somewhat more intelligent than the norm. Also, if taken independently instead of as part of either of the two sequel franchises the problem seems to be quite quickly contained (going by the newscasts) instead of being a truly apocalyptic event. It's also pretty clear that the survivors wipe themselves out through their incompetence and refusal to work together rather than any extreme danger from the zombies.
* TheUnreveal: In the sequels and remakes, it's never explained why the dead are coming back to life. Even in the original, the radioactive satellite explanation gets little attention, and is actually cut short by one of the other scientists who clearly thinks the idea is ridiculous. Justified in that we're not dealing with people investigating the cause, just dealing with the effects.
* TheVirus: Ghoul bites spread a deadly infection that cause victims to rise again, but all of the recent dead have risen.
** In fact, it's actually arguable if the bite is the cause. There's equal evidence to suggest that the bite merely kills because it's laden with lethal bacteria[[note]]TruthInTelevision; even the cleanest human mouth delivers bites that can rapidly go septic or cause diseases[[/note]] and it's the radiation that started the rise in the first place that causes the plague-killed body to then rise itself.
* [[WeAreExperiencingTechnicalDifficulties We've Been Experiencing Technical Difficulties]]: But Johnny foolishly [[IgnoredVitalNewsReports turns off the radio]] before finding out why.
* WhatTheHellHero: In the remake Judy Rose calls Ben and Cooper out on their childish arguing. Barbara also does this when Ben tells her she is losing it.
* WhoIsThisGuyAgain: Everyone but Barbra. People watching usually can only remember the characters as Black Guy, Bald Jackass, Mrs. Jackass, Kid, and almost everyone forgets there even ''were'' two teenagers in the movie.
* WomenDrivers: Barbra makes it all of about 100 feet in the car before crashing it into a tree. (She ''was'' just coasting after taking the emergency brake off. After all, Johnny has the key.) This scene was a ThrowItIn moment in the script, as the car had gotten a fender dented between shoots and an explanation had to be quickly contrived.
* ZombieApocalypse: [[spoiler: Averted, actually. Atypically for a zombie infection movie, the ending shows that the living win the day, and emerge unchanged.]] [[Film/DawnOfTheDead For now at least....]]
* ZombieInfectee: [[spoiler:Karen Cooper.]]
* ZombieGait: Interestingly averted with the very first zombie that Barbra and Johnny encounter.
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