Screenwriters Kenya Barris and Tracy Oliver know how to get the party started and keep it lively.
When young filmmakers gather to shoot cinema-verite video documentaries, watch out: Something really bad is going to happen. In “The Blair Witch Project,” it was ... well, we don’t really know what it was, but it sure freaked out Heather.
In “Cloverfield,” it was something large with an antipathy toward Manhattan landmarks. And in George A. Romero’s “Diary of the Dead,” as you have probably gathered by now, it is the meat-eating undead. These movies give the shaky-cam a reason to get shaky — but the kids try not to miss a shot.
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“Diary” is ostensibly edited by Debra (Michelle Morgan) from hand-held footage shot on the run by her film-student boyfriend Jason (Joshua Close) and some of their friends, who’ve been collaborating on Jason’s horror-movie student project, overseen by their alcoholic film professor Maxwell (Scott Wentworth), who’s just about the only person over 30 in the entire film, except for an old Amish guy who swings a mean scythe.
Writer-director Romero may be 68, but “Diary” is targeted at the Young of Intestines, a generation for whom zombie movies and Web video are facts of everyday life, as natural as eating flesh. [...]
But while horror provides the marketing hook, Romero’s movies are even more entertaining for their zesty sociopolitical satire...