Rant and Rave: ‘World War Z’

Image courtesy of Paramount Pictures

A twist from author Max Brooks’ classic and complex zombie tale will leave viewers either hungering for more or feeling bloated and overwhelmed. The apocalyptic thriller adaptation of World War Z – directed by Marc Forster and starring Brad Pitt as an official United Nations investigator dropped in the midst of the undead frenzy – premiered in Philippine theaters last June 20. The plot follows Gerry Lane (Pitt) as he slays and outruns sprinting and chomping corpses while trying to get to the root of the zombie virus pandemic.

Anybody familiar with Brooks’ cult-worshipped novel can immediately sense the huge disparity between book and film. While the former features a compilation of zombie narratives from multiple points of view, the latter decided to take on a more direct perspective and cast a central character with a unifying storyline peppered here and there with details from the book. The film could easily be considered a refreshing take for some or a shambling parody – a fiasco — for others.

While massive zombie attacks tend to follow Pitt wherever he goes, credit is given to the cast and producers for attempting to scare the viewers, instead of disgusting them – thus, the absence of gore fests much adored by horror purists. Action and adrenaline ran high from beginning up to the end, but came with the downside of having shaky and fuzzy camera work during the attack scenes, as well as a rushed finale. The whole package was absorbing and intense but it, somewhat, delivered the usual ingredients of horror entertainment without bothering to push boundaries. There was no new recipe for disaster – no spice, no zest.

While it may not be as exciting as expected, World War Z remains a fun and action-packed movie. It may have failed to live up to the name Brooks has created for it, but the intense screen-presence and acting of the talented cast is worth watching.

Rating: 3.0
Shi Ailyn

By Shi Ailyn

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