World War Z – Film Review
You know what I like about zombie movies (real ones. Not romcoms)?
Gore and practical effects. Hell, they’re the only reason I put up with The Walking Dead.
Guess what World War Z is missing?
TL;DR A zombie movie with CGI super zombies and no gore, World War Z isn’t a total embarrassment. A fast pace, ridiculously fun plotting, and a sincere performance from Brad Pitt are nice. But they’re not enough. 2 out of 5 stars.
When headshots are your primary method of zombie dispatchment, the no-gore thing hurts.
Oh, and I haven’t read the book. If you were wondering.
The plot follows Brad Pitt as he goes globetrotting for answers about the zombocalypse. These zombies are fast, inhumanly agile, resilient, and they don’t even eat you. That’s just insulting. On his travels, he encounters various action setpieces involving zombies that are apparently detemined not to attack the main character. He eventually winds up in a World Health Organisation in Wales, where he and some scientists realise the best way to outmanoeuvre the zombie horde is to infect themselves with the world’s worst diseases, which will make the zombies poo-poo them as a target.
Zombie snubbery via lethal injection. That’s fresh, at least.
For as much as World War Z gets right (Brad Pitt’s hair), there’s no getting past the bizarre decision to remove any worthwhile violence.
I mean, ffs, the solution to the zombies isn’t even something to hurt them. It’s camouflage.
Yeah, once camouflaged, the world’s militaries can easily take the zombies out (and burn them in wondrously enormous body piles), but come on.
Why I hate this movie:
The zombies don’t even eat people. They simply infect them and move on. With the amount of wussing out World War Z was doing, the “cure by love” ending from Warm Bodies would have fit in perfectly.
Obtrusive CGI is one of my huge hates, and this movie is overflowing with it. Almost every zombie is a CGI puppet, and they look like shit. This is compounded by the way the zombies move, which is insanely quickly and fluidly. The human body isn’t capable of that. I’d like to believe a decomposing one would be even less so.
During the fall of Jerusalem, they build a goddamn dog pile high enough to breach a city wall. Like, what the actual fuck, movie? It looks as CGI-shitty as it sounds. It’s one of the worst things I’ve seen in a movie all year. And I watched Movie 43 this year.
Also during the fall of Jerusalem, the zombies swarm the city streets in a literal wave. An impossibly quick wave of CGI zombies. It is crap.
The zombie assault on Jerusalem is caused by one person on a loudspeaker. I guess everyone else in the city and at the checkpoints and at the gates and making announcements must have been quiet as a mouse, then.
Considering a city the size of Jerusalem is reduced to nothing in a matter of minutes, Brad’s continued survival through everything (including a plane crash) is preposterous.
Oh, and Brad’s kids in the early scenes are a frustrating (and noisy) liability. Proving the wuss factor can get even worse, World War Z indulges in an laughable case of Infant Immortality. Even the young boy whose family they stayed with somehow escaped the fate his parents suffered and makes it to the end of the movie.
But it’s not all bad:
The pace never lets up. I think that has something to do with Brad’s improbable survival rate, but there’s rarely a dull moment.
And an abominable monstrosity of a spectacle is still a spectacle. Here’s to you, retarded zombie dog pile.
We don’t get a reason for the zombie outbreak. The opening montage is tempted to lean on the environmentalism angle, but luckily the movie proper doesn’t go preaching.
The opening montage includes a brief clip of the Miami zombie incident. Do you remember where you were?
After the plane crash, Brad is presumed dead, so his wife and kids are kicked off the UN boat because the deal Brad made is void. Fucking lol.
New Jersey is shown to be looting. Sounds about right.
The Israelis have multiple female soldiers on screen at once. Progressive.
Brad cuts off the hand of one who is bitten to stop the infection. They become best friends. She was my favourite character.
Peter Capaldi is one of the WHO doctors. I’m seeing Doctors everywhere this week.
Brad’s partner on his expedition to South Korea slips and falls while holding his gun, fatally shooting himself in the head. It’s nice to see slapstick comedy is still alive in 2013.
Oh, and when the infection breaks out on the plane, Brad and the passengers in his cabin try to use luggage to block the walkways. Just like in Snakes On A Plane. It also fails, like in Snakes On A Plane, but I appreciated the reference.
Action will never supplement gore or practical effects in a respectable zombie movie. Seriously, it’s like the Jersusalem dog pile was a joke one of the writers stuck to the CGI team’s wall as a joke. I hope they were as horrified as I was when they saw it. 2 out of 5 stars.