Found this gem today:
…it’s not a classic but it’s on its way to becoming one, and I want to talk about it here because it received minimal notice (like none) when it first appeared. By now it is a prize example of the film that builds a reputation only by word of mouth, without even the benefit of TV exposure, because it’s too rough to be shown thereon. Readers who live in cities or college towns, or who read the underground press…will know that I’m talking about Night of the Living Dead.
…I attended a midnight showing, the audience of which was primarily hip kids in their 20s come to laugh it up. Instead, I haven’t heard that kind of authentic audience response in the way of screams and gasps since the old days when an audience really did scream and gasp at horror movies.
…it concerns a night when the recently dead are reanimated with a hunger for human flesh.
The film combines suspense/terror … with gut, shock horror (extreme graphic cannabilism) more successfully than any other I can think of. Presumably George A. Romero (director/photographer) and John A. Russo (writer) deserve credit for the extraordinary film. I hope they make another.
– Baird Sales movie review in the June 1972 issue of the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction