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‘World War Z’ is a must see movie for fans of the zombie horror genre, those who love tense action movies, fans of solid big-budget movies, and for those who are just in love with its star Brad Pitt.
If you have seen the trailers or commercials for ‘World War Z’ then you have a working understanding of what the film is about. In the case of movie marketing, this film is anomalous; the ads all accurately depict the story without giving away any key details.
In ‘World War Z’ (WWZ) Brad Pitt portrays Gerry Lane, a former investigator for the U.N. who is drawn back into service when a global zombie outbreak threatens the lives of every human on the planet.
In his quest to find the origin of the pandemic, which re-animates the dead and spreads virally from the infected to living hosts, Lane travels the “four corners of the Earth” to find a cure.
The opening sequence, which is essentially what has been shown in the trailers, depicts Lane as a loving family man. Two loving daughters and a caring wife appear to be his only true motivation.
While traveling with his family in the Philadelphia area, a traffic jam turns into a living nightmare as the zombie pandemic strikes close to home for the Lanes. In an intense series of scenes, we find Gerry Lane and his family to be resolute and industrious in their attempts to escape the immediate dangers unfolding around them.
The first third of ‘WWZ’ is very intense, and may not be for younger children or the faint-hearted. Although the film shows discretion in the onscreen “gore” normally associated with zombie films, the sequences are tension-filled as we root for the Lane family to survive.
Director Marc Forster has done an excellent job with achieving a movie that has an epic scale and beautiful production values, yet is exceedingly human and intimate. Credit the well-cast supporting players and the writers for establishing our relationship with the Lane family early on.
As the global crisis worsens, Gerry Lane must separate from his family to ensure their safety while he seeks out a solution to save mankind. His quest for a cure will take him on an international, perilous journey where failure would result in the end of humanity.
Despite the rumors which surrounded ‘WWZ’ and detailed the many production delays, cost overruns, and re-written scenes ‘World War Z’ is a must-see for fans of high-adrenaline and intelligent action entertainment. Whatever problems plagued the movie while it was being made, the end results are a strikingly well-made film that should have a broad appeal to audiences.
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The music by U.K. band “Muse” adds to the atmosphere of ‘WWZ’ and their score is evocative of the band ‘Goblin’ who scored horror films back in the late seventies and early eighties for directors George A. Romero (Dawn of the Dead) and Dario Argento (Suspiria)
One of the actors conspicuously famous in a non-featured role is Matthew Fox (Lost, Speed Racer) as a soldier who assists the Lane family in their escape from Philadelphia.
Since ‘WWZ’ definitely leaves the door open for future stories/sequels about the zombie pandemic, the appearance of Fox struck me as noteworthy. Film directors don’t typically cast genre films with cameos unless they’re of the “tongue in cheek” variety.
In the remake ‘Evil Dead’ the appearance of Ash’s car from the original film is an obvious nod to fans from the 1981 original film. Cameos and “Easter Eggs” are for the very detailed observer or may have greater meaning.
Back to ‘WWZ.’ With the door open for future stories, as clearly defined by Gerry’s epilogue to ‘WWZ,’ wouldn’t it be possible that Matthew Fox and his character of ‘Parajumper’ would make for an interesting backstory or prequel detailing the origins or outbreak of the zombie apocolypse?
Or, was Fox’s character part of the rumored re-shoots and simply included in the small role due to his former associations on ‘Lost’ with writer Damon Lindelof?
I also found it interesting that ‘WWZ’ had to re-edit some story points in order to be considered for release in China. China is one of the largest markets in the world for motion pictures, yet has strong protocols in place to prevent Western films from painting them in a negative light.
Despite an obviously dubbed scene, wherein Gerry Lane clearly would have said ‘China’ as a point of origin for the zombie virus, it was dubbed over as ‘Israel’ in the film.
As of June 4, ‘World War Z’ had not yet passed the Chinese censors for release in their theaters.
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