I am quite proud of myself for going to see this film at the cinema. My massive fear of Zombies can reduce me to tears even in cases such as Shaun of the Dead, yup. But the trailer for World War Z put me at ease a little because it looked like there was little gore, they move fast unlike your half wit – foot dragging – brain eating Zombie, and there aren’t really any close ups of their gross faces. Brad Pitt lured me in, as well as the prospect of enjoying a Zombie film for the first time since I Am Legend (I use the term ‘enjoyed’ loosely).
With some help from IMDB: United Nations employee Gerry Lane traverses the world in a race against time to stop the Zombie pandemic that is toppling armies and governments, and threatening to destroy humanity itself. He leaves behind his two daughters and wife on a military ship whilst he goes off on this perilous journey, safe in the knowledge his help will secure their place on the boat. WWZ gets straight into it with very little time for establishing the setting. This was great though because there is even less ‘getting to know you’ time than The Impossible, (and that got stuck in pretty swiftly) it was done well and I still felt compassion for the characters. Once that bit with the Policeman in the trailer hits its all go go go from there on. Zombies EVERYWHERE.
People turned into Zombies within seconds and started running around biting people, using their own heads to smash open car windows and generally going berserk. I thought it was very well done, and there were more real acting Zombies rather than CGI than I thought there would be. Yes there are some gross bits and a lot of close calls when it came to being mauled but the action sequences whilst the family were running away were thrilling chase scenes. The most talked about aspect though is the sheer volume of Zombies in this film. The aerial shots from helicopters and planes are stunning. They are like ants but less civilised and there are thousands of them. Quite incomprehensible!
There are loads of brilliant parts to talk about (but I wont go into detail because that would spoil it for those who have not seen it) – the accidental shot to the head, the poorly timed phone call, sacrifices, breaching the walls, loss of limbs, THE PLANE CRASH, and the best part of all, the medical research centre finale. I obviously enjoyed this film more than I thought! But I think it was helped by Brad Pitt’s really quite humble character. He isn’t particularly heroic, he almost begrudgingly goes along with the mission but not in a cool anti-hero way – I just felt for him every step of the way and really wanted him to get back to his family.
(Tom had a theory about Gerry. The source material for WWZ is a book by Max Brooks which tells the stories of different people who survived the epidemic through interviews – is Gerry the guy that is doing the interviewing in the book? I couldn’t possibly say, having never read it – but I liked the theory.)
I enjoyed the edition of Daniella Kertesz’s character at this point in the film Gerry needed a companion and she was really quite hard-core. They made a good team despite having no emotional attachments to one another, I felt they needed each other in the moment – I’d like to think they remained friends. (Must remember the story doesn’t carry on when the credits role). Mireille Enos was good too as Gerry’s wife Karin, although she didn’t see much action, she played a believable part. The daughters are pretty non de-script though.
In fact, there are not many fully established characters worth talking about, and if I am honest this film is a disaster movie, not a Zombie flick – neither genre of which I particularly care for… Having said that, I really enjoyed World War Z. It is tense, exciting, heartbreaking, breath taking, and fast paced. I would recommend it even to those averse to Zombies like myself!
Full disclosure: Probably my shortest and most poorly written review to date – BUT it has been a long day and not being Zombie savvy there isn’t much to say apart from Brad Pitt is great, the special effects rocked it, and I DIDN’T cry. Boom.