You can kill zombies, but you can’t kill the zombie craze. There are countless zombie movies being released every year, and about 65% of them have “Of the Dead” in their title. This needs to stop. So we’ve compiled this list of 25 bad, goofy and possibly insane “Of the Dead” films to hopefully remind any aspiring zombie filmmakers we’ve already got plenty, thanks.
1) Diary of the Dead
There are actually two movies called Diary of the Dead: the most recent one, directed by George Romero, and one from 1976. Romero’s film is basically Cloverfield but with a zombie outbreak; the 1976 is just a weird noir drama about a guy trying to murder his mother-in-law. In any case, dead people don’t need diaries.
2) Flight of the Living Dead
This 2007 film takes all the excitement of a zombie outbreak and limits to a single plane. When a bunch of scientists try to ship a zombie, it of course gets loose and start infecting other passengers. It’s most notable for a scene where a zombie gets sucked through a jet engine and somehow is still moving afterwards. Please insert your own “flying is already hell” jokes here.
3) Dance of the Dead
When a freak accident at a power plant causes corpses from the nearby cemetery to rise from their graves, the zombies attack the nearby high school, where prom is taking place. Dance is a horror-comedy, so you shouldn’t mind things like the power of rock n’ roll soothing the zombies. But I’m still curious who would zone a power plant, a cemetery and a high school so close to each other.
4) Dale of the Dead
The only thing I know about this 2010 movie is what I’ve gleaned from the trailer, and that’s that four friends are trying to survive the zombie apocalypse, which admittedly seems pretty under control in the above trailer. Well, that and the filmmakers clearly thought Shaun of the Dead was onto something, title-wise.
5) Dave of the Dead
Don’t care for Shauns or Dales? Meet Dave of the Dead, which is supposedly coming out next year. In it, the zombie apocalypse has already happened, and zombies are now second-class citizens with zombie rights activists trying to help them out, which Dale becomes one of while trying to impress a girl.
6) Garden of the Dead
I’m just going to let Wikipedia summarize this 1972 film for me: “A group of prison inmates in a chain gang obtain some experimental formaldehyde, and get high off of it. They later try to escape and are shot dead. They are buried, and rise again to kill everyone in their path, and to find more formaldehyde to get high from.” It’s a Troma film, of course.
7) Street of the Dead
When you’re an indie filmmaker with no money, how do you film a zombie apocalypse? By confining it to a single street, that’s how. When Chauncey east an “ancient sandwich,” he turns into a zombie, Alan, Mort, Steve and Roger must somehow stop the outbreak while high as hell.
8) Theatre of the Dead
A group of actors putting on a play called “Angels in Hell” are shocked to discover the undead running around outside. The movie is the normal zombie shtick, just set in a theater, with some of the actors turning out to be more dangerous than the zombies. Still, you have to respect the movie’s tagline: “There are worse things than being torn apart by critics…”
9) Date of the Dead
A woman goes on a blind date only to discover he’s a zombie. And she eventually falls for him. Seriously.
10) Detention of the Dead
When a high school is overrun with zombies, the only survivors are the kids in detention. This 2012 movie is based on a 2011 stage play, both of which can be summed up as “The Breakfast Club during a zombie attack.”
11) Office of the Dead
Software engineer Ben Lau wotks for Life Corp, which is trying to make technology that will make unhappy people happy (don’t ask). In a significant setback for the project, it actually turns people into zombies instead, forcing Ben, his ex-girlfriend and project manager Liz and his co-worker Raj, to sneak through the zombie-laden building discovering the thematic similarities between mindless monsters and corporate America.
12) Stag Night of the Dead
The day before his wedding to the horrible Elaine, Dean has a bachelor party where he plays “Zomball” with his friends and a very accommodating stripper — Zomball being a game at a military compound where you get to shoot zombies with stun guns. This, shockingly, turns out to be a poor idea.
13) Gangs of the Dead
The Lords of Crenshaw and El Diablo are two rival gangs who hate each other, and aren’t going to let a meteorite that turns most of Los Angeles into zombies stop them.
14) Dorm of the Dead
Having attacked both detention and the prom, the zombies graduate to college in this 2012 super-indie flick. A slacker must protect his younger brother and a group of “quirky” survivors against to the co-ed undead.
15) Le6ion of the Dead
First of all, that’s not a typo, the movie is really called “Le6ion” with a six instead of a G, a decision so horrible I’m enraged at having to type it. Second of all, this movie is pretty much a crappier version of the Paul Bettany movie Legion, in which two teens must protect a cute diner waitress from the hordes of hell, which just happen to be zombies because zombies are cheaper than CG demon monsters.
16) Nudist Colony of the Dead
After the evil Judge Rhinehole shuts down the Sunny Buttocks Nudist Colony, the nudists vow revenge and make a suicide pact in this 1991 flick. Years later, a religious retreat is built over the camp, and of course, the nudists return as zombies to kill the people who condemned them and sing big musical numbers.
17) Juan of the Dead
Easily the best film on this list, Juan is a funny and interesting Cuban take on the zombie craze. The normally lazy Juan is transformed by the zombie apocalypse, as he becomes a zombie exterminator — he even has a catchphrase: “Juan of the Dead: We kill your loved ones. How can we help you today?” If you’ve ever wanted to see a movie where people are completely unfazed by the living dead, Juan is your film.
18) Hsien of the Dead
Don’t care for Shaun, Dave, Dale, or Juan? Then you might like Hsien, although I sincerely doubt it. Called “Singapore’s first zombie movie,” Hsien is a mix of Shaun of the Dead and the movies of Stephen Chow, just without any money whatsoever.
19) Lust of the Dead
This Japanese film — which has several sequels — is also called Rape Zombie. Because the zombies rape people, you see. It’s about a group of busty girls who band together to fight the horny horde, but you already knew that, didn’t you?
20) Renaissance of the Dead
A zombie outbreak hits a Renaissance Fair. Seriously.
21) Ghosts of the Civil Dead
This Australian drama movie actually has no zombies in it at all; it’s about prisoners and guards alike getting systematically brutalized to justify building a new facility. While the movie is clearly not ridiculous, I’ve included it anyways because it sounds like it’s about zombies attacking Civil War re-enactors.
22) Knight of the Dead
A group of knights try to bring the Holy Grail through a land infected by the Black Death, which in this instance turns people into zombies. It’s not to be confused with…
23) Knight of the Living Dead
A knight and a Viking get resurrected to continue their battle in this 2005 Icelandic film. I’ll let Wikipedia describe what makes it special: “It’s notable for the memorable characters that have nothing to do with the main story (Guitar Playing Dan, GasMask Man, The Shemale Mexican Mother), the battles between the Knight and Viking and the comedic overtunes to the gruesome death scenes.”
24) Night of the Naked Dead
Not only is this movie not a comedy, it doesn’t actually have any naked dead people in it. A better title would be Travesty of the Dead.
25) The Orgy of the Dead
To be fair, The Orgy of the Dead doesn’t actually feature an orgy either, but 1) it features a lot of naked ladies and 2) it was based on a book by Ed wood, so it has that going for it. In this 1965 skin flick, a couple survives a car crash only to find themselves stuck in a military compound where they’re forced to watch ten stripteases “by topless dancers from beyond the grave.” This movie was also known as Terror of the Living Dead for no reason whatsoever.