Thursday, July 04, 2013

World War Z, Or Something Not Quite Like It

I finally got around to seeing World War Z. After loving the utter bejaysus out of the book and being quite concerned about the trailer and the fast hooring zombies (© Dawn) back in December, I pretty much expected to hate it.


However, it was actually grand. Well, when I say that, I mean that it's a reasonably good zombie film with some enjoyable jumpy bits, but it's not World War Z. Not even a little bit. Although I did enjoy the collective "oh!" of recognition in the cinema when Ruth Negga popped up.

Anyway, I'm not sure why Brad Pitt bothered buying the rights to it really, because they essentially took all the things that made World War Z such a compelling and scary and fascinating read in the first place and just fucked it all in the bin, so Brad could run around saying "my family!", all of whom I hated within seconds.

Those discarded things included elderly Japanese blind monk Tomonaga, who takes on zombies with nothing more than a shovel and the patience to listen to everything very fucking carefully, and Tatsumi, his nerdy apprentice who becomes an awesome zombie killing warrior in his own right. I would have happily watched Gerry's family being eaten in the opening credits, even if it only meant a few minutes of those guys, or mercenary anti-hero T. Sean Collins or Colonel Christina Eliopolis, who crash lands in the middle of zombie-infested territory and manages to single-handedly fight her way to safety, while being guided by a mysterious sky watcher like a badass motherfucker.

Oh, just get eaten already.
It was always going to be difficult, if not downright impossible to make World War Z, a book that's made up of survivor interviews from all over the world, into a film. Which is why it never should have been squished and mangled into a two hour summer blockbuster in the first place.

If you're going to do any justice to a book as deadly and special as World War Z, it needs to be a documentary-style affair, or a dramatic mini series with interviews scattered along the way, like Band of Brothers, but with less making the viewer bawl crying and more zombie decapitation.

What really annoys me though, is this quote from Brad:

“I was never a huge horror fan to be honest,” insists Brad, 49, who says the £250million flick is more about the plot anyway.

“As for why zombies are so popular, I really have no idea."

HE DOESN'T EVEN LIKE ZOMBIES. SO WHY THE JAYSUS FUCK DID YOU GET INTO A BIDDING WAR WITH LEO DICAPRIO OVER THE RIGHTS?


Oh I see. Thanks for nothing, Brad.

12 comments :

  1. Di Caprio would have done it justice, isn't that right Leo <3

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  2. It's odd, I recently reread it and the two stories I wished I could see on film were Tatsumi escape from his flat and his meeting of Tomonaga and the journey of Christina Eliopolis.

    The book did good with both, but I could see them playing well (or even better) on screen. Each story could really be it's own movie (or you could move Eliopolis's story to Japan and have her meeting up the other two).

    A different movie with the conversation with Paul Redeker interspersed with the different people who implemented it could also be good.

    A World War Z movie was just never going to work. To me there's clearly a half-dozen movies in there. Have them all start with a vastly trimmed down Author's forward. But then they wouldn't all be the same genre so movie studios would get too confused.

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    1. That's it exactly, there are already a heap of potential films in the book as it is, which is why I think a mini series would have totally been the way to go!

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  3. Kitty, I couldnt agree more with you! Also, what in the great goddamn were they thinking leaving out everything you mentioned before AND Yonkers...I think bleedin Brad has been quaffing his poxy Chanel No 5, that is the ONLY explanation I can think of. Gah.
    (Dawn)

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    1. Bahahaha! You might be on to something there Dawn!

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  4. My favourite stories from the book were definitely Christina Eliopolis, Tatsumi and Tomonaga but other than that I was a bit conflicted about the book in general. When I saw the trailer for the film I knew it was going to be nothing like it- sure it barely even resembles the book! Pointless. I will be going to see it anyway though, cause you know, Zombies.

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    1. Oh definitely go see it, just ignore the fact that it's called World War Z and take it as it's own thing!

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  5. Sigh. I guess we'll have to wait another 25 years or so for Sci-Fi channel to get hte rights and make a bitchen mini-series...

    What film is that "dollar, dollar bills, y'all" clip from? Because I just saw that curly-haired-mullet-man in another film. Two films with curly-haired-mullets in one week... it's like the Universe is trying to tell me something...

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    1. Argh. Did I really mistype 'the'? Sigh.

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    2. That's Danny McBride in an episode of Eastbound and Down. He's also in This Is The End, which is probably what you saw him in! :)

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