Clueless gave us Emma in the ‘90s, Bride and Prejudice gave us Pride and Prejudice Bollywood-style, and now the latter Jane Austen novel gets zombies. Seth Grahame-Smith’s parody novel, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, is based on Austen’s work of the same name (minus the zombies) and was adapted for the big screen last year.
Starring Cinderella’s Lily James and Maleficent’s Sam Riley, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is one of your Sunday night movie selections on 23 April, inspiring us to uncover ten more undead gems.
- Night of the Living Dead (1968)
Zombie movies go way back, but it was George A. Romero who brought the genre to the fore, starting with his debut Night of the Living Dead. Filmed in black-and-white (for budget reasons) and featuring a black hero (a controversial plot point at the time), it wasn’t just its edge-of-your-seat terror and gut-busting gore that cemented the movie’s place in cinema history.
- Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Now the genre’s master, Romero followed up his 1968 splatter film with Dawn of the Dead. It didn’t continue the story of the previous film, but rather expanded on the notion of the zombie apocalypse to awesome effect.
- The Evil Dead (1981)
Sam Raimi’s place in the genre is forever secured thanks to his zombie masterpiece, The Evil Dead. Perfecting the horror of the “cabin in the woods” with his low-budget, high-passion horror, he would follow it up with two sequels and an exuberantly funny and totally terrifying TV series.
- Day of the Dead (1985)
Romero was back to add the third film to his zombie canon, in what became known as his Night of the Living Dead series. More than just gore galore, the films in his series sought to make insightful social commentary.
- Braindead (1992)
Before he got all hobbity, Peter Jackson made a handful of fantastically splatterific, New Zealand-set movies that were all gore, gore, and more gore. Instead of human-on-human infection, it’s a nasty little rat-monkey that turns people into zombies. It’s funny, gross, highly entertaining, and as far removed from Middle Earth as you can get.
- Resident Evil (2002)
We fell in love with Milla Jovovich when she saved the world in The Fifth Element. In Resident Evil she has more saving to do as the equally ass-kickingly awesome Alice. The evil suits of the Umbrella Corporation are to thank for the zombie apocalypse, due to a virus outbreak gone so horribly wrong, it takes Alice six movies to conquer the nasty undead.
- 28 Days Later (2002)
The chilling opening scene perfectly sets the tone of this masterful zombie flick by Danny Boyle, the man who brought us Trainspotting and Slumdog Millionaire. Not only did Boyle inject new life into the undead genre, he made the zombies freakishly fast. Highly lauded, the film’s success led to a sequel, 28 Weeks Later, as well as a graphic novel and comic book series.
- Shaun of the Dead (2004)
Part comedy, part horror, part social commentary. Zombie movies had been all these before, but Shaun of the Dead brought the sharp, witty and splattery zombie-comedy-horror genre to a new generation with gusto (and guts). This was thanks to Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, and Nira Park, a talented quadrangle of comics who regularly work together.
- Land of the Dead (2005)
If you were worried about sentient robots, then you ought to be terrified of the notion of sentient zombies. In Romero’s fourth Living Dead movie, the zombies are no longer just aimless, mumbling undeads. They can organise. They can lead. They attack with purpose. Who would take advantage of these sentient zombies to rule and repress? Humans, of course.
- Planet Terror (2007)
Film buddies Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino have collaborated often in the past. In 2007 they released their Grindhouse double feature, one-half of which was Rodriguez’s zombie-infested Planet Terror. Featuring a fantastic cast, including an unforgettable Bruce Willis cameo, it’s the ladies who stand out in this tale of terror, not least of which is Rose McGowan and her deadly new limb.
Feel the terror or 19th-century zombies with Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, this Sunday 23 April at 20:30 on M-Net Movies Premiere.
Zombies not your genre of choice? Luckily, we have two other Sunday night movie selections for you.
On M-Net at 20:05, Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt star in the Western remake of a Western remake of a Japanese epic, The Magnificent Seven.
On M-Net at 22:45, follow the remarkable life of Marie Curie, the first woman to win the Nobel Prize, in Marie Curie.
What will you be watching? Share your choice on social media using the hashtag #SundayNightMovie.