My Favorite Zombie Movies

Zombies are everywhere these days, but I'm not complaining. As a fan of horror, I love zombies, even if they are a bit overused. Zombie movies come a dime a dozen, but only a select few stand out as instant classics and cult favorites. Out of all the horror movies I've seen, these are my favorites. Check them out and let me know what your favorites are in the comments!

28 Days Later
28 Days Later

28 Days Later - 2002

This 2002 movie spun the zombie genre on its head by introducing running zombies, uncompromising violence, and engaging characters. This is one truly scary film – and it will stay with you long after you finish it. It's not only the zombified humans that are scary, but humanity in the face of apocalypse as well. There's definitely a lot of disturbing material here for horror fans.

28 Weeks Later
28 Weeks Later

28 Weeks Later - 2007

This sequel to 28 Days Later is also really amazing, although it doesn't quite meet up to the standards of the original. The premise is that six months after the original epidemic, people are trying to rebuild civilization. Once again, there is a lot of violence and gore, which is done really well. The two young stars do a great job in their roles. While it's not as good as 28 Days Later, it's still an excellent zombie film in its own right.

Dawn of the Dead - 2004
Dawn of the Dead - 2004

Dawn of the Dead – 2009

This remake of the zombie classic was actually done really, really well. The original is a classic (which will probably end up on this list after I re-watch it!), but the remake adds a lot of modern touches that scare today's viewers. This one hooks you right in with an incredible opening, and the pace doesn't let up. The gore is fantastic, and the zombies look awesome. This is one that every horror fan should see.

Day of the Dead
Day of the Dead

Day of the Dead – 1985

This final movie in Romero's epic trilogy was one of the first to really detail how humanity might start to collapse after an apocalypse. While there is plenty of zombie action, the main threat comes from humans. This is an unnerving movie that will make you start thinking about who you could trust if zombies ever happened for real.

Diary of the Dead
Diary of the Dead

Diary of the Dead – 2007

This is a more recent film directed by Romero. With this movie, Romero joined the array of found-footage films. I think it was a great success – the movie includes some seriously frightening news reports and of course, awesome gore. In traditional Romero fashion, there's also more to fear then just the undead – the actions of humans will also leave you shuddering.

Night of the Living Dead
Night of the Living Dead

Night of the Living Dead – 1968

The first amazing zombie film by Romero, Night of the Living Dead is a classic. Even though the film is old by today's standards, it's still surprisingly scary and unnerving. The characters will draw you in, the suspense will keep you hooked, and the ending will stay with you forever.

Perkins' 14
Perkins' 14

Perkins' 14 – 2009

This film was part of the After Dark Horror Fest, which is not always known for its quality. However, this is a little gem. Produced entirely over the interest with multiple writers and actors submitting ideas, this movie features an original idea surrounding zombies. The first half will have you feeling like a detective, working to discover the mystery, while the second half is pure zombie horror. It's definitely worth checking out.

Planet Terror
Planet Terror

Planet Terror – 2007

This film was one half of Tarantino and Rodriguez's Grindhouse. In my opinion, it's the only one watching. The action and gore in this film is totally outrageous, and the visual style harkens back to grindhouse-era B-movies of the past. Rose McGowan is excellent as the lead, and the movie is just a fun ride for anyone who is a fun of zombies, B-horror, and gore.

Pontypool
Pontypool

Pontypool – 2008

This is not your typical zombie film – in fact, some people wouldn't even call it a zombie movie at all. In this great thriller, a virus is spreading from person to person through the use of English. The entire movie takes place in one location, with only a few people. It's slow on action and gore, but high on tension and suspense. I highly recommend giving it a try.

The Returned
The Returned

The Returned – 2013

This is another movie that isn't your typical in-your-face zombie flick. The film is set in a universe where people infected with the virus can be "cured" with a daily injection. This movie revolves around the people during a shortage of the drug needed to keep the infected from turning into zombies. You won't even see a lot of zombies in this movie, but you will see how people act in a post-apocalyptic situation like this. The acting is well done and the pacing is good, although there are a few silly moments.

The Revenant
The Revenant

The Revenant – 2009

This atypical zombie movie focuses on only a few undead characters. Are they zombies? Are they vampires? It doesn't matter – this somewhat comical horror film is well-done and well worth your time. Settle in for an insightful, gory adventure that makes jokes and political statements.

State of Emergency
State of Emergency

State of Emergency – 2011

This is an underappreciated gem in the genre of zombie films. This one isn't all about having zombies in your face, and doesn't have the same bleakness as most other films in the genre. It's a nice change of pace for horror fans. This movie more explores how humanity reacts after a bio-plant explosion results in disasters. Although it's not the typical horror fare, it's very well done and should be given a chance.

ZMD: Zombies of Mass Destruction
ZMD: Zombies of Mass Destruction

ZMD – Zombies of Mass Destruction – 2009

This is another movie from the After Dark Horror Fest series, but luckily, it doesn't take itself too seriously. Unlike many of the Horror Fest films, this movie has decent acting. The makeup is pretty good too. The best part is the sheer silliness of this movie – you can't take it seriously! It's a fun, campy film that a good watch when you need something totally not dark and deep.

Zombieland
Zombieland

Zombieland – 2009

A fairly original entry in the zombie film genre. I would definitely classify this one as a horror-comedy, although it does have its dark moments. The mainstream actors do a great job in their roles, and the comedy aspect of the film is really well-done. Although this isn't the movie to watch if you are looking for a scary, gory ride, it's still a really fun film to take in, especially with friends.

Which one is your favorite?

  • Dawn of the Dead
  • Zombieland
  • The Returned
  • Perkins' 14
  • The Revenant
  • 28 Days Later
  • Night of the Living Dead
  • ZMD: Zombies of Mass Destruction
  • 28 Weeks Later
  • State of Emergency
  • Diary of the Dead
  • Pontypool
  • Day of the Dead
  • Planet Terror
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