This movie is the kind of movie you can’t help but leave with a slightly silly grin on your face. Now it might not be as quirky as you might be expecting, given the trailers – though it definitely does have its moments – but all in all this is just a really sweet movie.
And while yes, this is a zombie movie – brain eating definitely does occur – as with most zombie movies, the zombies are there (beyond the cinematic horror quotient) by and large as a way to reflect on the human condition. In this particular case, zombies are the quintessential mindless drones (something anyone who has worked in a cubicle can relate to), growing more dehumanized every day until one among them rediscovers the vital importance of human connection (something everyone in this cellular/digital/Facebook world can relate to). Now before you get too worried, yes, there is a nice dollop of action to balance things out, so it’s not all voice over exposition – but by and large, yes, this movie really is all about the love story.
And as a love story, well as I said before, it’s really, really sweet. And a little creepy. But mostly sweet.
As for the genre side, well, the zombie mythology does get a little loose around the edges, particularly in terms of the Boneys and why they suddenly start a vendetta, but as ravening monsters go they work just fine. Having not read the book yet, I’m not sure if there’s more to that aspect of the story on the page, but I am looking forward to finding out. And in terms of the larger theme, the Boneys also work well as a metaphor for what happens when we cut off all human contact, as the monsters we all can become.
So while this movie definitely has action, and definitely has gore, at its core it is a tug-the-heartstrings kind of story – though its earnestness is nicely leavened by its sense of humor, and the pervasive sense of imminent danger certainly keeps things lively. But while it may not be as gory as you’d expect, it will just make you smile.
Warm Bodies shambles into theaters February 1.