Joseph Pilato dies at age 70

Captain Henry Rhodes, played by Joseph Pilato in George A. Romero's zombie classic "Day Of The Dead" (1985), is one the most iconic figures in all of horror cinema. Pilato as Rhodes is to horror cinema what Sean Connery is to undercover agent films, Sylvester Stallone to boxing films, or Juergen Prochnow to naval war movies: the definitive incarnation of the character he's supposed to be, where the actor becomes synonymous with his role, the one that sets the standard in it's class.

Never before or after has the army-general-gone-mad been portrayed more boldly, Joseph Pilato made it look as if the man was physically burning on the inside. Pilato plays Rhodes, a character driven by fear and despair, full of hatred and impatience, with such grotesque intesity, you're shocked, and break into laughter at the same time.


This is not your average gun crazy soldier - this man has serious issues. He feels the ground slipping away beneath his feet, his own redundancy imminent, unable to adjust and cooperate. In the end, when it all falls apart, all that's left for him is to sacrifice himself for his narrow minded cause: "Choke on them!"

Joseph Pilato's screen time in "Day Of The Dead" is one of the (many) outstanding features of the film, a perfect match for George A. Romero's comic strip inspired style of direction.


Joseph Pilato passed away on March 24th 2019 at age 70.






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