On the Side: Its a good thing James Franco taught his little brother Dave how to act. Watch the process here.
Warm Bodies really messes with zombie mythology. If zombies try hard enough they can talk. They can also have zombie friends. They can also ll in love. And mostly skeletal zombies, called Boneys, can run ster than any human, while regular zombies lurch along at a rigamortis-ridden, glacial pace. With these and other transgressions aside, Warm Bodies never ceases to be entertaining. Written and directed by Jonathan Levine (50/50), the film features winning performances from all of its lead actors, a cleverly written script, and most importantly, an innate heart that makes it easy to overlook any mistakes.
Yes, this film has its issues, and a lot of its logic is hard to swallow, but its notable performances and direction strengthen its sweet, but not cloying, thesis. You root for R and Julie to make it as a dead/alive couple, and you just want those zombies to finally be understood! Warm Bodies is certainly watchable and offers a humanitarian approach to exhuming the world, post-zombie apocalypse.
Once you get past the zombie mythology issues, the script is cleverly written, and does make a lot of valid points on the lack of interconnectedness in todays society. There is also that Romeo and Juliet parable (note the main characters names) that is wisely alluded to directly in a certain scene, rather than looming over, wanting to be noticed. Levines film even features notable cinematography, which is somewhat rare in a film of this ilk taking a page from perhaps another Nicholas Hoult joint, A Single Man, the color saturates and des as along with the films current emotional level. While this is an obvious choice, it certainly works here.
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One day, te brings R together with human survivor Julie (Teresa Palmer) as she and her friends are battling against him and his zombie pack, which includes his middle-aged zombie bestie M (a delightful Rob Corddry). R ends up killing and eating the brains of Julies boyfriend Perry (Dave Franco) and he, in turn, gets to experience Perrys memories, which largely include lling in love with Julie. Because of the memories, and probably because Julie is a stone cold hottie, R acts against his zombie nature and rescues her, taking her to his dwelling in an abandoned airplane. As the two spend time together (and Julie tries to make several escapes), they start to ll in love and R slowly becomes more and more human. The zombies see that R has formed an attachment to Julie, and their relationship has a strange effect on them
With these issues aside, the film does win you over. This is largely in part to its pair of young actors, Hoult and Palmer, who and have a great deal of chemistry and inject a zip and a fizz into all of their scenes. Hoult, especially, is limited in his earlier scenes in the film,new york asian escort model since he cant really speak or move all that much, but he is a very skilled actor and does a lot with his eyes and his exemplary voiceover narration in order to get the proper emotions across. Palmer is often compared to Kristen Stewart, probably because they are around the same age and look siWarm Bodies Humormilarly, but she can act circles around Miss Bella Swan, in that she has a tangible personality on screen and can even pull off the action sequences. Even the best friend roles, filled by [zombie] Cordry and [human] Analeigh Tipton are fully fleshed out, and provide added comic relief. There is a standout scene when Julie and Nora (Tipton) give R a human makeover thats cute without being twee it even self-referentially uses the song Pretty Woman, and all the young stars really sparkle.
Malkovich acts like Malkovich, which is always strongly encouraged.
The Upside: Good performances all around and a clever script and direction by Jonathan Levine. The film is entertaining throughout.
The Downside: There are some pacing issues and a lot of messing around with zombie mythology.
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Trouble arises for the zombies on two fronts. On one end, those bad CGI Boneys are growing increasingly perturbed with their fleshier contemporaries and starting the looming threat of a zombie war. On the other, Julies pill of a ther, Gen. Grigio (John Malkovich) is staunchly anti-zombie, seeing as they ate his wife, and obviously resistant to giving any zombie, let alone one in love with his daughter, a chance.
Movie Review, John Malkovich, Jonathan Levine, Nicholas Hoult, Rob Corddry, Teresa Palmer, Warm Bodies
This film does suffer from a lot of pacing issues. For instance, too much time is spent at the beginning of the film with zombies pacing in the airport, and we stay way too long in the abandoned airplane with Julie still being mildly afraid of R. At an otherwise tight 97 minutes, it would have been in the films best interests to get things going much more quickly. The love story between R and Julie could have kicked off in full force a lot earlier, and a lot of the action doesnt occur until three-quarters of the way through. That being said, the getting to know you scenes between R and Julie certainly are winning, as he shares his record collection with her and she re-teaches him how to drive.
And again, the most glaring issues here result from the inconsistencies with zombie mythology. The film is based on a novel (by Isaac Marion), so its hard to say how ithful it is to the original text, but why would Boneys ever be so st? They are merely bone and sinew wouldnt they just be rotting in a corner somewhere? And yes, R is becoming more human, but does that mean that he no longer craves human flesh? A brief scene of perhaps R relearning the joys of eating an apple, for instance, would have done some much needed explaining.
Our protagonist and narrator is R (Nicholas Hoult), so named because he cant remember his name from when he was alive only that it might have begun with an R. R is a zombie, and yes, he does eat people, but at least hes conflicted about it, right? Death has also been kind to him, Humor, as while he is slowed down some, and is really pale and quite banged up, his hair looks artfully tousled and his eyes have turned a dreamy ice blue.