Warm Bodies – Film Review
Because we just need more “Nicholas Hoult wearing a red hoodie” in our lives.
No, really. Is that a trope now?
TL;DR If you can stomach “the power of love” as a cure for zombification, then you might have an okay time with Warm Bodies. Hoult and Teresa Palmer give it a good effort, but the movie is way too concerned with making you feel good. 3 out of 5 stars.
It’s trying to give you a warm feeling inside your body? Oh yeah, I’m witty.
The plot tracks main character R (Hoult), who is a zombie following the zombocalypse. He has a lot of inner monologue. A lot. Things kick off when his roaming pack of fellow z-heads runs into Teresa’s group of survivor scavengers. R kills and eats the brains of Teresa’s boyfriend (Dave Franco), which in this universe, allows zombies to experience their memories. Ergo, R gets a rotting boner for Teresa. He takes her to safety and thus begins the story of their disgusting romance. Eventually they realise that love turns zombies back into humans. They have to convince human survivor leader (and Teresa’s father) John Malkovich, while also dealing with an assault from the Bonies, who are hardcore, skeletal zombies.
Zombie politics, man.
I was surprised by how much of this movie I didn’t hate. I thought the whole concept was stupid. Even worse than Twilight. At least vampries’ dicks are only full of coagulated blood, and therefore can’t get hard. But zombies would be lucky if theirs haven’t snapped off.
Teresa and Hoult make it work, though.
The main problem with the movie would obviously be the “power of love” solution to the zombies. I mean, honestly. It’s just so fucking retarded. Like, really retarded. Like, super super retarded.
Why I hate this movie:
Ugh, so retarded. Really, Warm Bodies? All zombies need is to see a pretty blonde and be one of the magical few zombies who can overcome their flesh-lust to satiate their actual lust? What the fucking fuck?
By having the zombies become human again, the movie also avoids having to really address the zombie-on-human relationship issue, which is what I thought the movie was supposed to be about.
The fact that the zombies are apparently all conscious inside their own minds is fucking discomforting. I didn’t expect to get any serious horror (nor did I want to), but there it is. Jesus. It’s also a sour reminder of the pitiable Land of the Dead. At least those zombies were putting their intelligence to good use, not just trying to get a shag.
The Bonies are pretty disappointing CGI.
Teresa isn’t that bothered that R killed her longtime boyfriend and ate his brains and then wanted to fuck her. I know it’s the apocalypse and times are tough, but a girl shouldn’t evere be that desperate. She brushes it off with a “I had been ready to lose him for a while” speech because he’d been hardened by the harshness of post-zombocalyptic life. Rude.
R isn’t particularly repentant, either. He has a token inner monologue about feeling a bit guilty lolz, but keeps eating Dave’s brains to experience more of Teresa. And essentially, R is just a vessel for Dave’s feelings, so the whole situation is gross and fucked up. But hopefully the heart warming (literally) happy ending will distract you from that.
I could barely hear a fucking thing R says because it’s always so obnoxiously hushed and breathy. Fortunately, his zombie vocabulary is pretty limited, but that volume disparity thing really pisses me off.
Much like I Give It a Year, the actors’ nationalities irked me. Hoult is a Brit playing an American, and Teresa is an Australian playing an American. I’m petty like that.
There is some hipster creep. R and Teresa bond over their appreciation for vinyl. Ugh, someone get me a bucket. Of fried chicked. Which I will eat. And then vomit up.
R is able to penetrate the humans’ safe zone with zero effort. He just follows a hilariously poorly guarded path from Dave’s memories. Dumb.
There’s a silly Romeo and Juliet balcony reference. I though we’d all agreed that New Moon had put Romeo and Juliet references to bed for now?
Reasons to watch:
She does get to hold a gun to Malkovich’s head, though. I’d sign onto a movie just for that (I’d sign onto a movie for the money and fame, too. Please scout me, casting agents).
Teresa pretty much has to carry the movie. There’s only so many breathy grunts and pained expressions Hoult can do. It’s a good thing she’s amazing. Put aside her willingness to forget about Dave at the drop of a hat, and she’s very likeable. She’s also self-sufficient (I know R has to save her a couple of times, but you’re gonna get that during the zombocalypse), and she’s even willing to ditch R to return to the safe zone. Because living is more important than getting your supernatural bone on. Okay, Bella?
Conversely, she’s not a total dick, either. When she and R are taking shelter in the suburban house, she hides from Malkovich’s rescue patrol so R doesn’t get discovered and killed.
The support R receives from his friend Rob Corddry and his growing crew of zombie allies is cute. The zombies joining forces with the human soldiers to fight the Bonies was pretty uplifting.
R’s instructions to Teresa to play zombie and blend in gave me nice reminders to Shaun of the Dead’s zombie tutorial sequence. And to a more serious extent, The Walking Dead’s blending in scene during season 1. Teresa’s initial ineptitude is endearing, too.
Best line goes to R, with this perfectly measured and tasteful inner mnologue to Teresa taking her wet clothes off in front of him: “Holy shit!” Fair point.
Baby Mila Kunis and Teresa give R a makeover to smuggle him through the safe zone. I lol’d.
Baby Mila Kunis is kind of a bitter spinster. One of us.
Oh, and even when they’re rehumanified, the zombies don’t regain their full memories back. So that’s at least 1 thing Warm Bodies was brave enough to not give an easy answer to.
It is full of charm, and the romance isn’t anywhere near as shallow and downright wrong as Twilight. But it’s still kinda hard to give a shit about a girl who’s willing to fuck off Dave Franco for a decaying Nicholas Hoult. 3 out of 5 stars.