directed by Marc Forster
We’ve all heard the horror stories of stymied production, re-writes, re-shoots, road blocks and other nondescript calamities that nearly derailed the Marc Forster directed genre film about a zombie apocalypse, and, for most of us, these stories melded into a kind of cautionary tale warning us against seeing what surely would be prove to be utter shite. And it was thusly that I sat down in the auditorium (telling myself that I could find worse ways to waste 2 hours of my evening) to get a load of Brad Pitt’s crack at a big budget action movie (in his own way). While the film has its problems, most notably the abrupt and almost propaganda-esque denouement, I have to say it wasn’t a total loss for me. While I didn’t find the zombie spin particularly novel (except perhaps in terms of sheer scale, plotwise), I did find it refreshing to see a zombie film that didn’t necessarily revolve around a group of captives (in a house, or building, or mall, etc) attempting to survive a gore-glutted night. Instead, WWZ opts for the opposite approach as it follows Brad Pitt’s character across the globe in search of clues and, hopefully, a cure. Not to give the film too much credit, but I have been catching myself comparing WWZ to 28 Days Later... and Children of Men (to which I will say “You’re welcome, WWZ.”) in terms of tone and depiction of said outbreak, which is to say that it isn’t preoccupied with blood and guts (though the intensity is palpable at times) to sell the story. All involved give credible performances, particularly Mireille Enos (who is excellent as Pitt’s solid wife), and the film’s serious tone bears the weight of the story without tipping too much into the realm of incredulity. Zombie fans, give it a shot. Everyone else? What the hell, give it a shot, too. As one who has been down the road already I can assure you: there ARE worse ways to waste 2 hours.