I really wish I hadn't contributed money to this. I mean, it wasn't the worst movie I had ever seen by far, but I'm really just tired of these big blockbusters with money shot after money shot and no sense of action pacing getting made. The only reason I came was because my family guilt tripped me into going to the theater with them, and apparently seeing Monsters U again was just too much to ask for.
So, WWZ, the movie with the almighty Internet asterisk letting everybody know that it's not like the book. Does it hold up on it's own? Well, kind of, but not really.
You see, I could closely examine every facet of this movie's writing and tone, but what really matters is that there was a point in the movie where Jerusalem was being invaded by thousands and thousands of the living dead while our main character frantically ran for his life towards a commercial airliner as a last resort, and I was just sitting there, looking around the theater, bored out of my mind.
Needless to say, that's a bit of an issue.
And that's the real issue I had: I never got immersed in the movie. I just saw flashy images on screen, and I realized that now was the time that the movie had intended for me to gawk at a big scenery shot, or get excited at an action scene, or connect with the characters. It wanted me to do those things, but I never actually did. It was about as immersive as an "APPLAUD" sign in a sitcom live audience recording.
The characters work in their roles, but they aren't really anything to write home about with Brad Pitt pretty much in the driver seat of the story, which is pretty much your standard "move from point A to point B, and then afterwards to point C" zombie plot, just on a bigger scale.
But let's not beat around the bush here, people didn't come to see Oscar bait, they came to see ACTION. MEATY GLORIOUS ACTION. They want to know about THE ACTION.
To whit I say: what about the action? Oh sure, there's a few good setpieces here and there, but that's just what they are: setpieces. The movie felt like 5 different stories all inexplicably strung together by Brad Pitt's presence. This movie could've benefited from being a series of Sin City style vignettes centered around this event, but instead opts to be a heroic journey beyond the means of any realism that the book so gracefully embellished in its story. I mean, Brad Pitt plays an "everyman" character that has some experience working in the UN, but it's hard to do the everyman routine when your main character is 'nade spamming the plane that he's currently on, and surviving with his only wound being from loose shrapnel.
If there's anything entertaining in this movie, it's in the last act in the hospital, where the movie finally slows the fuck down and allows tension to seep back in. Instead of machine gunning 1000's of undead stacking upon each other over a city wall, you get 3 people trying to get past 80 zombies without attracting any attention. It's the contrast of setpieces that shows that sometimes the simplest thing will do the trick instead of just blowing your CGI load into the audience's eyes.
World War Z is definitely a movie. It is approximately 2 hours long, and features a series of exciting things happening in a sequence. It won't have you immersed in its story, it won't stick out in your mind years from now, but if you want to see pretty images without any Michael Bay style offensive stupidity, then this will fulfill your low standards.
Dangit, it's not like this is 2019 or anything! You're supposed to just turn your brain off and enjoy the film for the dumb fun it is! You just don't get it!
I haven't actually seen the film, and it's likely that I won't since I rarely go to the cinema in the first place. But it seems to be getting pretty resounding responses of "mmmmmeeeehhhh" from the people who do see it, so that doesn't really make me feel like jumping out of my seat and going down to see it right this minute!
Also, seems like it would kinda be a little offensive to the people who actually expected it to be an adaptation of the book. Those poor, silly people.
Personally, I enjoyed the film, sure, it wasn't the best thing I watched this year (that would be Star Trek: Into Darkness) But I found the pacing good and the characters enjoyable, it immersed me and the 2 hours flew by for me.
Sure there is an overload of action, but at least it was good action.
Keep in mind I have never read the books.