Sunday, June 16, 2013

Now at Netflix: Warm Bodies (2013)

Warm Bodies (2013) - Written and Directed by Jonathan Levine; Starring Nicholas Hault, Teresa Palmer, John Malkovich, Rob Corddry, Analeigh Tipton, Dave Franco.

By Kenny Howell

Zombies are the new vampires.

Movies, TV and books are overrun by zombies these days, and they are once again killing a horror staple.

However, the genre can be injected with some new blood, and that is exactly what has been done with Warm Bodies.

Warm Bodies takes what we know about the zombie genre, mindless brain eaters, and puts a fun twist on it. In this one, the narrator is a zombie named R. He can think pretty clearly, clear enough to let you know what is going on, but can't verbally or physically express it because he is, well, you know, a corpse.

On an attack one day, he sees Julie (Palmer), the daughter of a ruthless zombie killing leader played by Malkovich. He instantly falls in love, and even more so when he eats the brains of her boyfriend and consumes his thoughts and feelings. He saves her from the other zombies, and hides her out in his plane where he spends most of his time. There she learns that they can be healed, and she goes about trying to find a way to convince her Dad that they are worth saving.

There is obviously several metaphors here - not giving up on the downtrodden, learning to love someone who is very different from you, hints of overcoming racism - but those are just backdrops for a fun movie. Writer-Director Levine has gets innovative with the idea, and the movies just comes off as a lot of fun. Zombie purists may scoff at the idea, but how many more movies can you make where zombies are metaphors for things before it gets old. I honestly think that time has kind of passed, and Warm Bodies has brought it back to life a bit.

Based on the book by Isaac Marion.

In addition to Redbox, Warm Bodies is available at Netflix, iTunes and Amazon Prime Instant.

Rating: ***1/2

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