Zombie King George Romero Once Made a Very Different Monster Movie

director George A Romero most memorable for his series of zombie movies night of the living deadBut what most viewers don’t know is that the acclaimed independent horror filmmaker also dabbles in vampires.In fact, in 1977 Martin It’s a vampire movie directed by Romero, filled with his trademark cynicism, atmosphere, and even some geeky moments of violence. It’s not quite the vampire movie you’d imagine it to be, though. instead, Martin Much of it reads like a slow-burn psychological horror movie designed to keep viewers guessing whether the titular character is actually a vampire.But one thing we know for sure is Martin is one of Romero’s best work – a true underrated gem of his cinematic history that deserves more attention.

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By the late ’70s, Romero had been working in the independent film industry for nearly a decade. Of course, he started his career with the 1968 blockbuster horror film, night of the living dead. The zombie classic was produced on a razor-sharp budget and sold ridiculously high box-office returns, catapulting Romero to instant fame in the genre-making world. Most importantly, he brought life to the zombie subgenre that would forever reshape the way we tell stories about the undead. Few have had as much of an impact on a genre as Romero had on horror, but he’ll eventually take a few years off from the genre.He forayed into the world of romantic comedies with the 1971 film always vanilla then dabbled in witchcraft-centric dramas in 1973 season of the witch. After a brief absence, Romero would return to full-blown horror with another film in 1973, madmanand the lost and recently discovered 1975 amusement park.

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George Romero’s captivating rendition of the vampire

Martin in George Romero's 'Martin' targets victims
Image via Libra Films

After revolutionizing and popularizing zombies for the first time, Romero attacked a different kind of monster—the vampire. The film follows a young man named Martin (john apras) who believes he is a vampire while also trying to live a low-key life in Pittsburgh as he lives with his hostile cousin Tateh Cuda (Lincoln Mazel). It’s an unconventional vampire movie that strips away most of the creature’s most obvious traits in favor of a bleak and confusing story. At times, Martin and those around him seem convinced that he is one of these creatures, but at other times, the situation is less clear. The only person left to handle the case is Cuda, who sets serious boundaries for Martin’s bloodlust. He was permanently banned from killing anyone in Pittsburgh, and Cuda threatened to kill him without reservation if he did. The film tells the story of Martin going out of town in search of game or wandering the city between kills.

Martin This is a movie about the loneliness of being a vampire. Because of his condition, he doesn’t have any close friends and the relationships he does have are almost completely damaged by it. Almost everyone who knew Martin had a bad opinion of him. Forced to go out of town alone several times, he stalked, found and murdered his victims. By the end of the movie, after almost bonding with a few people, he’s left behind by friends who plan to start a new life elsewhere. He was told they would never forget him, and he assured them they would. As a vampire, Martin didn’t lead an exciting and fulfilling life. This is a lonely adventure.

The question is also whether Martin is a vampire in the first place. Apart from drinking the blood of his victims, he has almost no vampiric traits. He doesn’t even drink the blood of the people he kills. Often, he would drug them this way, use a razor, cut their arms open, and drink their blood. Martin has no fangs. He doesn’t turn into a bat. He has absolutely no Transylvanian accent. Honestly, he’s… kind of like a serial killer? Many times, when Romero is about to kill, he quickly cuts to these beautiful black-and-white shots that present an idealized, romantic view of a vampire showing the crime he’s about to commit. Then we cut to what actually happened, and the results are always less than glamorous. His kills are sloppy, drawn out, and brutal – the exact opposite of what normal vampires are usually capable of accomplishing.

This confusing thread is what makes this movie so interesting in the first place. If Martin is undeniably a vampire, then this might be the most peaceful film of the entire subgenre. It’s because we’re not sure that every scene is so funny. You always wonder if you’re just watching a lonely guy wander aimlessly through Pittsburgh until he finally murders his next victim…or if he’s an ancient vampire who’s been around for centuries, see Watching people he knew pass him by. This uncertainty also makes the film’s ending all the more tragic. Does Martin still have a chance of being saved, or is he doomed forever to a life of misery?

‘Martin’ is one of Romero’s most down-to-earth films

Sarah Venable in George Romero's 'Martin'
Image via Libra Films

Martin Fits perfectly with Romero’s other low-budget independent films. Like his other pre-80s work, Martin Because of the way it was shot and edited, it has an almost documentary-like look. Every frame takes a breather for as long as it needs to, and hardly any quick cuts are implemented. Romero gives his actors plenty of room to make their characters feel alive and real by locking down the camera for long periods of time. Everyone talks about how Spielberg uses long shots, but our boy Romero also knows how to use them. At times, the film can test your patience with the film’s rambling moments, but overall, this reality-based approach only makes the story more haunting.while at the same time Martin Largely a grounded, depressing take on vampire lore, it does feature some rather neat special effects done by makeup legends Tom Savignyhe also plays a role in this movie.

Although this is not one of Romero’s most famous films Martin Definitely one of his most charming. By telling the vampire story in this down-to-earth, cynical way, Romero puts on an entertaining, worthwhile reinvention of the classic monster.It’s not like one of his bloody feasts dead Movie, also wasn’t one of his easier ventures into studio filmmaking, but by his own account it was his most personal and favorite film. So if you want to bridge some of the blind spots in Romero’s film knowledge, Martin may suit you best.

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