Brad Pitt puts his soul into WWZ. His heart shines through his eyes, Watching him is mesmerizing. You will be unable to take your eyes off of him and not because of his dashing good looks, but because of his rich inner life. Pitt (Gerry Lane) is always striving to save his wife (Karen Lane) and their children, much as he has done in his role of Angelina Jolie's steadfast husband. He is not fooled by appearances. His wife in WWZ portrayed by Murielle Enos is perhaps his finest casting. After starring in the troubled TV drama The Killing,, Enos's first movie is WWZ and she has never seen a film about zombies.
She is a fresh face that loves the camera, WWZ has a great opening of a family unit being threatened by zombies, appearing out of nowhere. While driving through the streets of Philadelphia, Karen, Geri and their children are filled with terror, as you will be, by unknown creatures splashed on windshields and running in streets. But Geri is grace under pressure. The camera work is done in flashes so the mind does not capture the complete images of the zombies which maintains the mystery and keeps the movie from being an over the top caricature of your stereotypical bloodsucking monster -- the undead...
The plot of this book by NY Times bestselling author Max Brooks, son of Mel Brooks and Ann Bancroft, is linear and not made needlessly complex with chaos masking as plot.
Geri who is retired from the UN is recruited to find the cause of a zombie pandemic. Geri, Karen and her children are flown to a safe air craft carrier at sea. From here Geri is sent to Korea where he encounters David Morse, a military pow, who gives him a clue to go to Israel where they have built walls to keep out the zombies. He says the only way to be safe is to be contained. From Korea all the while running and cycling quietly from zombies who are stirred up by noise, Geri flies to Israel. And so the plot goes into various countries and continually running from the undead. On the flight from America a scientist tells Geri to look for small clues to solve this mystery. Then in Israel you have one of these clues when zombies run by a man who looks unhealthy and dangerously thin. They do not want his blood.
Directed by Marc Foster, WWZ is successful with its production values and direction of actors. The screenplay is written by M. Carnahan, D. Goddard, D. Lindelof and J.Straczynsk and has a great deal of black humor during all the bloodletting, my laughter was heard in a theatre of silence.
Stellar camera work and sound slowly build an impending doom. Don't miss this one -- though the ending sucks.
Follow Carole Mallory on Twitter: www.twitter.com/carolemallory