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June 20, 2013

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Richard

Walter’s a great essayist, but who knew he had a degree in advanced microbiology? Thus he debunks WWZ’s ending and saves us low-watt masses from interpreting it as it was intended, a lesson in finding creative solutions outside the box, or something like that. If only he protected us from the scientific incorrectness of so many other films: "Jurassic Park" (cloning dinosaurs through embalmed mosquitoes is preposterous), "Alien" (a mouth inside a mouth would choke it to death) and "Raiders of the Lost Ark.” (Closing your eyes does not protect your head from being exploded, shriveled, or melted by pissed-off angels. OBVIOUSLY.)

Josh

Wow. I was just going to post that Ron had a good point about expecting art to match your political beliefs, but then shit got real. Anyway, I actually agree, judging art for not getting in line with you is pointless. you should read the book and see for yourself. the politics in it is learner's permit-level stuff. and for the record, propaganda for any side has a particular stink about it. thing is, the novel version of wwz is promoting a particular vision of politics that is very much coloured that way. it just happens that the colour matches our standard-issue filters, so it's maybe not super obvious, although should be to anyone who's paying attention. if critical thought is now personal politics to be left out of a discussion, what are we supposed to talk about? box office?

MBI

(I'm Ron)

MBI

If you want to judge movies on whether it matches your political beliefs, go join the rest of them over on Focus on the Family or any other Christian review site; you'll fit right in. If you can't handle something not matching your exact level of anti-Americanism (or pro-Americanism, or feminism or libertarianism or pro-animal-rights-ism or what-the-fuck-ever), just admit that you don't actually want good movies, you just want propaganda for your side. (BTW, never said anything wasn't or shouldn't be political.)

V. Rednart

Not as tedious as people who insist that the personal/political has no place in mass entertainment when in fact mass entertainment is filthy with it's own brand of politics that reflect the personal politics of the makers of said mass entertainment. If you think aggrandizment of the CIA isn't political then you are dumber than your comment makes you out to be.

Ron

"I struggle with anything that paints organizations like the CIA and IDF as any kind of force for good"

There is no critic more tedious than one who demands that art reflect their personal politics.

Josh

Agreed re: Kurt's comment about the source novel. It was actually pretty lame, and in ways that go beyond the writing. I struggle with anything that paints organizations like the CIA and IDF as any kind of force for good--like even vs. zombies, that's how cynical history has made me--and a lot of the political stuff in the book seemed drawn uncritically from some sort of centrist-received-wisdom reference guide. You know, American and Israeli governments good and competent, those of eastern Europe less-so, and China a truth-repressing breeding ground for pandemics (as true as that may be, we all know that industrialized food production is the real roulette we're playing). Is it too much to ask for a genre movie to challenge at least some of this stuff?

Anyway, for my two cents, Colson Whitehead's Zone One is the best zombie novel, followed by Matheson's I Am Legend, which needs a restraining order against Hollywood. How about Zone One directed by Neill Blomkamp, starring Donald Glover? I'd kickstart that sh*t.

Mike

At least I'll Do Anything (1994) had Albert Brooks, some good Hollywood satire, and Joely Richardson full-frontal sideways. This seems more like a zombified Town & Country (2001), with the audience wondering "Where did all the money go?" and "Why was this concept so highly-prized in the first place?" and "Was this scene from the original script, the on-set rewrites, or the post-preview reshoots?"

Chris

Anyone who's seen The Killing already knows that Mireille Enos is one to watch. Unfortunately, that also means you've seen The Killing.

Kurt

Bingo of 28 Weeks Later. One of the best genre films of the 21st century. Thus far it looks like there is little chance of beating it with this.

FWIW, the book is pretty shitty, first draft-kind-of writing. I didn't have high hopes for the film, and I'll certainly be skipping it.

Furthermore, if you want to go to the other end of a large zombie infection writ small, I humbly recommend Pontypool (both the novel and the film) because it is its own kind of genius.

 braak

Ugh, Lindelof was probably so proud of himself when he thought of that, too. Just spent all night staring at his computer screen until it hits him like a bolt of thunder.

"Eureka!" he says, while he's writing, then can't wait to rush out and explain it to his friends. He tells everyone, even the waiter at the restaurant -- who doesn't care -- and every time the explanation is nestled in a bed of incomprehensible justifications.

"Don't you get it?" He tells the waiter. "We always act like zombie movies are about death, but really they're about life. The disease is a kind of LIFE, that's why it can beat DEATH! Get it?"

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