|Directed by:||Zack Snyder|
|Written by:||James Gunn|
|Cast:||Sarah Polley, Ving Rhames, Jake Weber, Mekhi Phifer|
I can see why so many people prefer this remake over the original. It’s faster, it’s louder, the cast is more recognizable, the humor is darker and more evident, and it features an awesome Richard Cheese song.
I think it’s more of an exciting film than the original, catering more to the satisfaction of those primitive senses of amusement. I mean if my buddies came over and wanted to watch a fun zombie movie, I’d definitely pick Snyder’s version because it just speaks more to today’s audience.
But for me, I think I’m just a little more old school when it comes to my horror movies, and there are certain elements of Romero’s that leave this remake feeling a bit empty. Instead of just a cool place for a zombie flick, the mall setting had so much more meaning in the original.
I’m not going to let the lack of clever satire on the social order of consumerism impact my enjoyment of the movie, but it definitely has an impact on the overall brilliance of it all, which this movie just doesn’t have.
And it’s the themes explored in the original that are kind of incorporated in this one, but just isn’t done in a way that has much of an impact, or at least not as much as before. One of the things I loved about the original was how even after zombie start eating us, humans are still a threat to survival.
This one does have that element, but it’s in the form of two douchebag security guards, and it doesn’t take long for that whole situation to brushed aside and for one of them to naturally become one of the good guys.
Same goes for the “we have to kill our friend because he’s been bitten” scenario. Romero’s has much more of an impact because it happens to a character that we’ve spent enough time with to actually care about. In Snyder’s, it happens to someone we’ve only known for a couple of minutes. Sure it’s sad, but nowhere near as heartbreaking as its predecessor.
And really that falls into my overall complaint about the characters in this one. For one thing, there’s too many of them. The only character I gave a shit about was the nurse, played by cute as a button Sarah Polley, because she’s the only one that feels even slightly developed.
The rest of them are just so clichéd. The badass loner, the sensible leader with all the plans and is everyone’s friend, the ditzy chick who causes more problems with her utter stupidity. These people are simply there for body count and nothing else.
BOTTOM LINE: I liked it. It’s a decent remake and it’s pretty fun, but it’s still missing a lot of the things that I love so much about the original. It isn’t written as well, the characters aren’t as likable, the running zombies just aren’t as scary as the lurking ones, and you can’t top the practical effects and overall gore factor. Still, it’s a fun zombie flick and I always have a good time with it.