POP ART: Episode 68, Dawn of the Dead/Nocturama

Howard Casner • January 11, 2022

MALLED: Join me and The Vern of Cinema Recall as we discuss George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead and the controversial French film Nocturna, both films about people stuck at a mall.

“When there’s no more room in hell, the dead walk the earth”. When was the last time you’ve been to an enclosed mall? It’s a dying cultural artifact, empty sepulchers. But at one time, it seemed the center of the known universe. So much so, that many movies revolved around this iconic location. Sounds like it’s time for Episode 68 of Pop Art, the podcast where my guest chooses a movie from popular culture, and I’ll select a film from the more art/classic/indie side of cinema with a connection to it. For this episode, I am happy to welcome as my guest, film enthusiast, blogger and podcaster The Vern, of Cinema Recall, who has chosen as his selection George Romero’s follow up to his classic film Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead, while I have chosen Bertrand Bonello’s controversial French film, Nocturama, both about groups of people stuck at a mall.

And in this episode we answer such questions as: What went wrong with the make-up in Dawn of the Dead? What is the French extremity movement? Who played the elf zombie? Why was Nocturama so controversial? What mall gave Romero the idea for Dawn of the Dead? Why did Nocturama change its name? How does Dawn of the Dead relate to January 6? What three movies influenced Nocturama? What was the original ending of Dawn of the Dead? Why was Nocturama rejected at Cannes? What is the difference between the Romero and Argento version of Dawn of the Dead? What is the major flaw in living dead movies?