Anybody, anywhere who is even remotely, tangentially interested in Zombies, has been doing the same.
Its not like the book.
Its not at all like the book.
It bears no resemblance to the book.
And that is a good thing because the book is utterly brilliant. So there is a movie still waiting to be made from this book, and I’m waiting to watch the movie that is waiting to be made.
Which brings us to this actual movie that has been released.
Its pretty good. The opening scenes of chaos in Philadelphia were compelling and graphic. No great long bullshit introduction – no long and winding back story. Just head and vital organs first into the gore and mayhem – thank-you very much.
From this point the story follows a familiar arc – outbreak and insanity spreading faster than the authorities ability to comprehend it, let alone respond to it. An eclectic group of individuals bought together by what remains of government emerges as mankinds best, last hope.
And if we have to have a best, last hope then Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt) is a pretty good one. A mysterious kick-ass past with an unnamed agency – thoughtful, decisive and tough. Gerry is the kind of guy you want dealing with an Apocalypse-type situation. Good man in a crisis. Paired with a scientist you’d cross a room to avoid at a party and a team of professional murderers. Go Team.
Gerry’s ex-agency connections get him and his family a hot extraction from a roof-top that I won’t forget that soon and transport to a safe haven off-shore on a ship that is basically all that is left of functioning US Government. Gerry’s family is allowed to stay onboard only as long as he agrees to go back in the field to find patient zero rumoured to be running around Korea near a US Military base. Anybody left on land is quickly being consumed and recycled so Gerry has no option but to leave his family and do the bidding of what is left of the government.
Patient Zero is not to be found but working on some intel Gerry heads off to Israel where apparently they have their act together. It seems they do. The Israelis are resourceful and organised – to a fault and up to a point. But the Zombies (remember them) are faster, more numerous and remorseless than in any other Zombie movie I’ve seen. Human civilisation appears to be on the brink of extinction.
Whilst he has been fighting, fending-off and generally running from Zombies, Gerry has at least kept his eyes and ears open. From a few small observations a potential chink in the Zombie armor appears – and with it a desperately slim chance for human survival opens.
In many ways this is a conventional apocalypse style thriller – just with turbo-charged Zombies running the show. The set-pieces are brilliantly executed (hello – roof top) and the constant round of narrow escapes builds an exhausting tension quite well.
I really liked the film. I noticed that the audience in my session had taken to giggling – even referring to one of the Zombies as Lil Wayne – which was kind of funny. See if you can spot this particular Zombie.
8 out of 10 for me.