Title: World War Z
Country: USA, Malta
Language: English, Spanish, Hebrew, Arabic
Genre: Action, Adventure
Director: Marc Forster
Matthew Michael Carnahan
J. Michael Straczynski
James Badge Dale
Fabrizio Zacharee Guido
Like gold dust, a hefty-invested blockbuster with a problematic partial re-filming (including a complete overhaul of the ending owing to its financial curb) and a procrastinated release date could actually trounce its foreboding karma and pans out to be a competent money-maker in the bloodthirsty summer season, not to mention has earned itself a sensational caption as “ the highest grossing film ever for the mega-star Brad Pitt”.
Directed by Marc Forster (QUANTUM OF SOLACE 2008; STRANGER THAN FICTION 2006; STAY 2005; FINDING NEVERLAND 2004; MONSTER’S BALL 2001), who is to some extent oscillating between a major company’s hack and an accomplished auteur in the indiewood. WORLD WAR Z craftily grafts mind-blowing visual feasts onto an apocalyptic milieu with rapid-running zombies infected by unknown virus, and keep contaminating the residual humankind. The backstory sounds familiar but film constructs an alternative coda, not the hackneyed one-man-saves-the-world heroism, instead, it offers a more plausible expedient to both avoid the callow overkill and underscore the future with a bleaker hope for the story to continue.
The film never stray from a standard zombiefest routine, but the execution is commendable, an indeed white-knuckle experience from A to Z, the process of this prerogative family’s running away from a zombie-invading Philadelphia has been handled even-handedly, although Pitt’s wife and daughters would only be the burden for his further mission.
Bounding from South Korea to Jerusalem, then a considerably smaller-scaled finale inside a secular lab in Scotland, the film brings us a gripping journey but there is no superhero to save mankind.
In the South Korea chapter, an unexpected self-shooting accident happens out of the left field, in view of the executor’s seemingly essential role as the last straw to stop this mess. This is a wonderful surprise I don’t mind watching more on screens nowadays. Moreover, the treatment of silence is another feat creatively applied here, pretty contrasts to the common hubbub in the action pack, but as a corollary, there will be an inconvenient silence-breaker thanks to the unwitting wife’s timely call, otherwise, the act is too smooth and casualties can never be spared in this case (farewell, James Badge Dale).
However, the pinnacle no doubt should attribute to the raiding of City of David, excellent airborne shots render viewers a stately sacredness to witness the havoc, a sarcastic indication of a rabble of Muslims hymning cheerfully would insanely precipitate zombies to rally outside the bulwarks and eventually break into the city thanks to their umpteen quantities, which is a tad offensive but from the prospect of a non-believer, the irony is a bonanza since we are in desperation for some gallows humor under the circumstances.
Most dissenters would argue the reshoot of the final act (an original plan includes a massive combat sets in Moscow) is a letdown simply because it is not epic enough to culminate the prescribed “the bigger the better” adrenaline drive, nevertheless, this thriftier approach options a no-gut-no-glory scheme which turns out to be a fairly conducted indoor thriller, and one can even laugh about the ostentatious plugging of the beverage company during the revelational discovery. The cast is inherently viable, Pitt underplays his charisma to be more approachable, it is rather comforting to see Enos clench a major film role and she could have been a better fighter than her screen hubby.
In a nutshell, WORLD WAR Z is an entertaining popcorn fare, and doesn’t try to patronize and outsmart its audience and showboats its CGI stunts to offer a bombarding sense of instantaneous grandiosity, which ultimately will fall bland in aftertaste. This alone can make most tentpoles pale in comparison.