2nd Amendment to the Constitution of The United States of America

A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

"I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians."
- George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

Sunday, June 23, 2013

World War Z finally makes it to the theaters... (Warning: Spoilers)

....and it doesn't disappoint.

First off, long time no post, sorry.  Same excuses as normal....

The adaptation of Max Brook's book has finally been released in theaters this weekend and is making a lot of money right now.  But is the money all of the people going to see it worth it?  In one word, yes.

If you read the book you may of found it, like I did, a bit sluggish in parts.  I mean really its a book about the character Brad Pitt plays in the movie going around getting first hand accounts of the zombie plague from survivors to document it for the UN, not necessarily to cure it.  Matter of fact, if I remember correctly the book takes place 10 years or so after the initial plague and tells stories from the viewpoint of various people to include:

  • An Indian office worker that barely escapes on an ad hoc flotilla 
  • A blind monk who survives with the aid of a staff in Japan.
  • A web surfer who relates how he was so attached to following the event online he failed to realize it was happening around him.
  • A Russian priest that puts down Russian soldiers who have been bitten fighting the undead to save their souls from condemnation if they commit suicide to avoid their fate.
  • A US soldier who is a member of a transformed Army created specifically to fight the hordes.
  • A man who fought in the massive catacombs under Paris removing the undead.
  • An industrialist in exile who pro fitted in the middle of the disaster.

In the book the undead are massive shambling hordes that sometimes take hours or even days to arrive at a location and mankind has been reduced to living in safe zones while eradicating the zombies or waiting for their eventual deterioration to dust.  In the movie the zeds are running, swarming masses that pile on each other scrambling and climbing like some pile of army ants.  Actually, that's a pretty good comparison for a movie called "World War Z". Anyway, the protagonist in the movie, "Gerry" played by Pitt, is transformed from some bureaucrat from the book into a U.N. investigator that specializes in investigation the more nastier places on the planet.

There are made some assumptions and mistakes shown in the film that would otherwise make it a somewhat "unbelievable" farce, but the pace and action is generally good enough throughout it to make you just skim over these little mistakes.  But hell, what fun would this be without pointing out a few, so here we go (again, caution: spoilers ahead)

  • They say that airlines were the perfect transmitter for this disease in the movie to spread it throughout the world, yet the transmission time was mere seconds, as it was shown in the movie, any plane taken over by them would most likely not make it to its destination.
  • A C-141 takes off from an aircraft carrier. OK, maybe JATO or something, but how would it of landed?
  • In the scene where they are trying to sneak through the WHO research facility and are freaking about stepping on glass and such while walking about that will make noise to attract the undead, what about the undead making noise milling about, wouldn't that make them attract each other. 
  • The general assumption that the UN would actually solve anything.
  • They make a big deal about Gerry's one daughter having asthma in the beginning of the movie, and then as soon as they reach the ship she is pretty much out of the script.  Why bother to build that detail into the movie?  Same thing with that little Hispanic kid they save.
  • WTF was up with David Morse's CIA character in the Korean scene?  I know it gave a continuance to the plot line to get him to Israel, but seriously, a rogue, crazy CIA agent just happens to be there like that?
  • It takes like 10 seconds to turn into being a zed, but he chops off that Israeli's soldier's hand after they got bit like 5 or 6 seconds later and she doesn't turn.  So I guess the virus just sits there at the bite site for 10 seconds and then shoots through the movie.  And it seems like he was rushing her to the WHO facility because I thought he must of realized she was naturally immune....nope.

This is my daughter, she has asthma.  If you forget that don't worry we won't reference that again...

But on the other hand, the movie does a few things very well....

  • After the initial credits, the movie introduces you to Gerry and his family, and then right away starts the action...very cool, no waiting.
  • I saw it in 3D, the affects were not over gimicky once you got used to the idea that most scenes had some type of depth to it.  Again, very cool.
  • The zombie masses are CGI, but really done CGI, and the large city scapes with fires burning in large cities is done well. 
  • As he has proved before, Brad Pitt can pull off action movies, and this movie turns a fairly slow, cerebral read into a vehicle he can drive fairly well. 

I'm Brad Pitt, and this is my hair, deal with it.....I sleep with Angelina Jolie, deal with it....and yeah, she had her breasts removed.....I bought her better breasts....bigger breasts....yeah...'cause I'm Brad Pitt....deal with it....

While the concept of the book somewhat relates to the book, the story line takes off on its own tangent after the first hour and ends up different from the book.  We generally don't like movies with bleak endings so the movie does make its own "happy" ending separate from the book. Overall, the ending is a bit weak, ok, we are somehow able to make a "livable" form of meningitis that is still bad enough for the undead to avoid us as being undesirable, but still weak enough to survive, all after the best virologist we have offs himself with a ND after falling (keep your finger off that Glock trigger folks!) and most of the known world, to include our research and development facilities, have been overrun.  OK, suspend disbelief a bit and enjoy the ride.

Can I recommend this movie as a truthful adaptation of the book, no.  Can I recommend it as a good, Summer action blockbuster....most definitely.