Reviews of movies from my giant DVD tower, and more.
Released on February 1, 2013
Directed by Jonathan Levine
Written by Jonathan Levine, from the novel by Isaac Marion
Cast: Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer, Rob Corddry, Dave Franco, Analeigh Tipton, John Malkovich, Cory Hardrict, Patrick Sabongui, Tod Fennell, Vincent Leclerc, Daniel Rindress-Kay
My first-ever humanistic zombie film! A fun, engaging, and warmhearted twist on the typical zombie story, that takes the famous romance tale by William Shakespeare and turns it on its half-chewed ear. In a nutshell, a young zombie named R falls for a human girl named Julie in a post-apocalyptic world, and it’s not long before she’s falling for him as well; together, they hope to convince both humans and zombies that feelings of love will help the walking dead regain their humanity and return to their former selves.
A strange scenario, yes, and at first I was put off by the disregard of accepted rules of zombieism, and the fact these zombies seemed more like harmless, heavily-medicated hobos than the decaying, crazed bastards I was used to seeing…but once the idea of the zombie-human co-existence began to take shape, and the sweet story of R and Julie took hold, I found myself finally getting into it.
Of the many interesting variations of the zombie mythology seen throughout the film, the one I liked most was the ability of R to learn about Julie—and thus became attracted to her—by devouring her boyfriend’s brain and experiencing his thoughts and memories of her through ingestion…and if you’ve ever seen Attack of the Crab Monsters, you know this talent is entirely possible.
In fact, I really wish the R and Julie romance was the entire story, but unfortunately, the narrative too many times sidestepped this angle in favor of the bothersome Bonies, a more dangerous and skeleton-like race of zombies who weren’t convincing to me at all, and whose ‘conflict’ storyline seemed to intrude on everything I was most interested in. In the end, though, it was an enjoyable ride once you accepted the conceit, and if there was a moral to be learned, I’d say it was love conquers all…including the undead. (7/10)