Life for former United Nations investigator Gerry Lane and his family seems content. Suddenly, the world is plagued by a mysterious infection turning whole human populations into rampaging mindless zombies. After barely escaping the chaos, Lane is persuaded to go on a mission to investigate this disease. What follows is a perilous trek around the world where Lane must brave horrific dangers and long odds to find answers before human civilization falls.Written by
Kenneth Chisholm (email@example.com)
Brad Pitt said of his involvement in the film - "This whole thing started because I just wanted to do a film that my boys could see before they turned 18 - one that they would like, anyways. And they love a zombie." See more »
When people are shown entering Jerusalem through a checkpoint, a medical tent is shown with a Red Cross instead of The Red Star of David; the emblem that Israel uses. See more »
World War Z is an entertaining, fun night out but not original in the slightest
Finally, after years of facing difficulty with production and resources, World War Z has come our way, and it promises an epic and grandeur scale. The film definitely contains most of the elements fans have always desired in a zombie movie; it actually mixes horror, suspense, and action all in one movie. One act transpires underneath the roofs of a daunting apartment building when another act takes the audience across the world to Israel where the people left are forced to defend themselves against a monstrously colossal horde of zombies as they pile in. There are jump-scares. There are grisly and highly unfortunate deaths.
Anyways, the film focuses on Brad Pitt's character (Gerry Lane) who's required to assist the UN with discovering a possible vaccine/cure to the horrifying virus that's spreading throughout the world and turning human beings into ghastly creatures. If he refuses to comply, they'll willingly kick his entire family off a tanker- one of the few safe locations left in the world. From there on, Gerry Lane is forced to transcend country after country in order to secure his family's safety and possibly save humanity. A hell of a lot is at stake, that's for sure.
Now, I can definitely state that one of the best aspects of the film is its acting, especially Brad Pitt's, which, as usual, doesn't disappoint. One can clearly witness the fear and terror present in almost every character's eyes, as well as one specific character quite convincingly pulling off the feeling of sheer pain under horrendous circumstances.
With that being said, the very beginning of the film starts off a little bizarrely as the pace seems to suffer. With the running time that the movie possesses, such a rich and complex story is compacted to fit its duration, which means right off the bat, we're met with the apocalypse and the zombie outbreak. We only receive a few minutes, if that, of the main family's daily lives until they're cast into the conflict almost instantly. As a result, conversations feel extremely and oddly brief and segments that could've been expanded on feel like they're set on "fast forward" in order to get to the "point." This means that there's much less space for character development and characterization in general, and zombie movies (or we can say Horror movies as a whole) definitely need to spend some time on their characters so that the audience is able to connect with them and feel for them as they progress on their journey. When they feel fear, we have to feel fear for them as well. Unfortunately, as this is largely a Hollywood blockbuster and not something like 28 Weeks Later, the film has to reach the action-packed bits as soon as possible.
And this is when the film will cause a fair amount of decisiveness- the audience who read the book will approach the film differently than the ones who've seen the trailers and are just simply interested in the plot that's promised. I've read up on reviews, and most of the negative reviews originate from the individuals who expected an honest- shall I say- adaptation of the book (this is exactly the issue that faced The Great Gatsby or any other adaptation for that matter). I haven't read the book, which means I don't need to furiously rant about the film's disconnection from its novelistic counterpart. If you haven't read the book, you have no reason to worry about potential disappointment; that's practically reserved for the book's fans. If you're a book fan, on the other hand, you should be expecting the two's differentiation from one another.
So, to put it most understandably, if you're entering this movie the way it was marketed, you'll experience a wild, roller-coaster ride that's fairly effective in its capability of featuring some dramatic moments of diplomatic negotiations and political discussions over the world's collapse and then placing you into intensely impossible situations only to be followed by an incredibly suspenseful, nerve-wracking sequence. It's highly entertaining however, it's the furthest from originality a film can get. I mean, it's yet another zombie movie, dealing with the entire world under a deadly zombie virus. You've basically seen everything in this movie already as 28 Days Later and 28 Weeks Later highlighted the serious effects of such an event already. In that case- during its first act- World War Z feels unbelievably similar to the two films mentioned above. Especially considering the decision to exclude the more political aspect of the novel and turning the adaptation into an action flick instead, there's not much here that'll bask in uniqueness, really.
This all begs the question: how much longer will these numerous entertainment industries create zombie stories after zombie stories? It's time to move on to another fascinating idea. Leave the genre alone, but then again, as long as these studios continue to rake in millions, they'll continually produce the same product. In the end, World War Z is a fun, entertaining night out, but if you can't make it to the showing, don't feel too bad because you've most likely seen everything displayed in this film already.
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