Friday, July 5, 2013

Review 180: "World War Z"

Where do I even begin?


The Walking Dead

      I don't even know. Look, I know it's not really fair to judge a movie on it's trailer, but World War Z had some pretty damn terrible trailers. Couple that with stories of the film's troubled production, where the entire third act was apparently scrapped and re-filmed, it was kinda hard to believe that WWZ had any chance of being good. But, you know what? We should have trusted out guts because World War Z is a giant piece of crap. Directed by Marc Forester (Quantum of Solace) and written by Matthew Michael Carnahan (State of Play), Drew Goddard (Cloverfield) and rewritten by Damon Lindelof (Cowboys and Aliens), the film is based the novel by Max Brooks. It follows Gerry (Brad Pitt) as he leaves his wife (Mireille Enos) and kids (Sterling Jerins and Abigail Hargrove) in order to help investigate what caused a zombie outbreak. Helped by one-handed soldier Segen (Daniella Kertesz) and a doctor (Pierfrancesco Favino), he instead discovers what might actually be a cure.

"What's this? A zombie apocalypse? Hang on,
I need to sexy."
Just, Nothing

      This. This is just... everything I expected it to be and more. This movie shows all the telltale signs of a movie that got butchered in post-production. The story is a complete and utter mess. Plot points, like Pitt's leaving the UN after releasing a damaging document, are only brought up once and never have any impact on the plot. Thanks to the changed ending, Matthew Fox's role as a soldier is laughably short. There is never really any baring on why these people are doing what they are doing and the main goal of the film changes multiple times through, making it hard to get invested. Pitt's family vanished half-way through the movie and one character, a doctor, is built up as an important character, only for them to be killed in one of the most laughably pathetic way every committed to film. It might have worked in a funnier movie, but WWZ takes itself so seriously, it's hard to have any fun. Not that if it was funny you could. Forester directs the movie to death, with so much shaky cam the action scenes are completely ruined by the fact that you can't see a goddamn thing.

World War Zzzzzzzzz

      The film is devoid of thrills thanks to the appalling editing and the chills are gone to, thanks to so laughable "zombies". I saw this film with about 20 other people, and in the big action climax of the story, almost the entire audience was laughing directly at the zombies. The way the run at full sprint and take wide corners, bashing into walls isn't scary, it's a freaking Three Stooges routine. On top of that, zombies bashing their heads against windows and biting at the air, making a distinct snapping noise like a f*cking snapping turtle, as it turns out, is stupid and funny and not threatening and scary. But, the biggest problem with World War Z is also it's least interesting. It's so boring. I nearly feel asleep at one point, my brother did fall asleep and I almost left the theater to do something more productive, but I stuck with it. And while the ending reveal as how the "camouflage" themselves is actually really interesting, it feels so rushed that I'm not even sure I would have missed anything if I had left. Pitt might make a fine lead and Kertesz does great in her first major role, but not even they can save what is essentially 28 Days Later if it was made by the History Channel. No, not even the History Channel. A&E. Ugh.

Just as stupid as it looks.
 The Verdict

      World War Z, at it's best, is pathetically cliched and uninteresting. At it's worst, it's painful to watch and downright laughable. It's got terrible zombies that can't even bring the slightest scare, bland characters that disappear thanks to the film's choppy editing and action scenes about as watchable as taking a cheese grater directly to the eye. It's a pathetic attempt to make a conventional zombie story, something we desperately do not need any more of. And the fact that it fails on almost every conceivable level is not actually all that surprising. I was bored all the way through it and there's no doubt about it. World War Z is one of the worst films of 2013. World War Z gets 1 and a half stars out of 6.


  1. Worst film! Constant tension. Excellent set-piece scenes. Great opening scenes if social collapse. Sure, not much continuity, but since I went in without knowledge, I was satisfied with its choppy, desperate tone.

    1. I get people liking this movie, but for me personally, I didn't get the desperate tone. The movie never really felt desperate. I knew Pitt would make it out of whatever problem faced and therefore I also lost the tension. Just didn't work for me. Then again most zombies stories don't so maybe it's just me.