World War Z: 94/100
World War Z is the most sophisticated Zombie movie I've seen. It's also the least gory. While the lack of blood and close ups of bodies being dismembered (and eaten) may be a turn off for hardcore zombie fans - it by no means took away from the suspense. This movie was much more of a Thriller than a Horror movie but kept me on the edge of my seat for the ENTIRE film. It took away the cliche's and redundant fun that the genre usually exploits and turned it into something more serious and realistic. Reminding me more of Contagion than Night of the Living X.
World War Z follows Brad Pitt who is a United Nation field agent as he tries to find where the source of the infection originated. Traveling from Asia, to Israel and eventually Russia. Along the way he notices certain aspects of the "un-dead" that help him unravel the mystery. He first notices that they turn in about 12 seconds after being bitten and that a bite is the only thing that seems to transmit the disease. It's not known what actually causes the infection - is it viral? That isn't explained and seems to be left for a sequel.
The movie starts with him and his family going into New York City before realizing that what was thought to be an outbreak of rabies. It doesn't take long before the infected start to spread and Brad and his family take shelter in an Apartment. Since he is with the UN and they want him for a mission they send a helicopter to take them to a Naval warship that is out in the Atlantic. The un-dead start to quickly take over the entire world since after being bitten it only takes 11 seconds to change.
On the ship he is briefed on what his mission is going to be - which is that he is to escort a viral specialist to where the first known location of the infection was reported. An email went out from there with the word "Zombie" - which at first wasn't thought to be legitimate - that was until zombie - like people started running a muck.
On the flight to Asia the scientist talks about how Mother Nature operates and that she will disguise her weakness as her strength. He also says that she leaves behind crumbs that eventually turn into clues if you know what to look out for. This is for-shadowing what Brad will be doing for the rest of the movie. Putting the pieces together.
Unfortunately the scientists role is short lived as he accidentally kills himself after they land. At the prison where they believe the outbreak to originate they learn that the first person infected was bit by someone the locals had bound and placed in a barn. That meant that it could have been anyone who originally bit him - that bit the person they brought back to the base. Leading to what seemed to be a dead-end. That is until Brad talks to a CIA agent who appears to have gone crazy after the outbreak. He learned from him that some places beat the outbreak by removing all of their teeth. He also tells him that he should talk to someone in Israel because they haven't been infected and blocked off the walls to their city way before the infection got to them. Where did they get the "heads up?"
Fast Forward. Brad lands in Israel and talks to the man responsible for locking up the city in time. The ancient walls came in handy as they were too high for the un-dead to overcome. He said that the Jews started a new way to deal with potential threats by something called the "10th Man." Essentially when they are discussing if a threat is real and 9 of them agree that it isn't - the 10th man must take the role of the devils advocate and assume that it is real. The threat? A message that there was a Zombie outbreak. This led to them taking the precautions against what ended up being very real. The 10th man says that they got the message from India - and this was going to be Brad's next stop...
The city was actually allowing any survivors to enter because "Everyone we save is one less zombie to fight" - in their elation of being "Saved" they start to sing prayers. Since the un-dead are excited by noise - this makes the horde start to storm the walls. While only one cannot reach the top - one piled one one - piled on thousands CAN - and do, and they quickly invade and infect the entire city. Brad barely escapes by getting on a commercial plane headed to Russia. Why Russia? He notices that the zombies were completely ignoring certain people - as if they were invisible. He realizes that the thing these people seemed to have in common is that they were terminally ill. He calls up the UN and asks where the nearest place that has deadly diseases stored - hence his new destination in Russia.
On the plane ride over a zombie gets lose on the plane and along with his new Israeli military woman companion - which he cut her hand off in time after being bitten! - he throws a grenade inside the plane. Airing out the zombies but causing it to crash. They both survive and make it to the research facility with the deadly diseases.
The scientists at the facility assume he is there to try and infect the already infected - and say they already tried that and it didn't work. He's like, no I want to infect the living with a deadly disease because I think then the zombies won't try to bite them. They are skeptical but what do they have to lose? Of course the diseases are located in a part of the facility that is over-run by the un-dead. They also learn that the un-dead go into a kind of trance state or become dormant when there is nothing going on around them. If they see someone alive or hear any loud noises they go back to full - zombie mode. This adds to the suspense as they have to navigate to the storage room without being heard or seen. Eventually get seen and two of his companions go one direction and he goes to the storage room. He gets the diseases and is about to attempt to go back when he sees that there is an un-dead waiting for him at the door. He decides he's gotta test out his theory anyways so he might as well do it now! He injects himself with a deadly virus, hopefully one that also has a cure. Opens the door. The zombie checks him out and seems to be able to sense that he is already doomed and goes back to searching for a more healthy candidate. Brad goes back to the others and all of the other un-dead ignore him.
Success! He has discovered a way to camouflage the un-affected by giving them a deadly disease - that also has a cure. This works because the infected's goal is to bite a healthy host, that will then bite another - and so on. It's a similar reason to why they don't bite each other. So although this doesn't actually solve the zombie problem it does help those trying to take back the world have a fighting chance. I'm assuming that's what will be covered in the sequel. That and continuing to find what started this all in the first place.
World War Z has a clever title and the movie ended up being even better than I expected. The anti-gore actually added to the suspense because it leaves your imagination to fill in the disgusting details and doesn't force you to watch. This made the movie more accessible and lets a younger and more squeamish audience enjoy what they usually would avoid going to see.
When I was driving home from the theater I started to think about something. There was a quick scene when Brad was walking down a street. There weren't any zombies around and someone looked out at him from a window in their house. I was thinking - what do they do now? What would I do if the world as we knew it was pretty much gone? What about after the zombies were gone? When the un-dead are still around you have something to do - you try to take back over. But what do you do when "survival mode" is over? What do those people stuck in their houses do after things go back to "normal?" What do they normally do anyways? Sit in their house -watch tv, eat, go to work - repeat. I guess my thought was that now they have a goal to RE-build something. But without a zombie Apocalypse, why can't we use that same "survival mode" motivation to go and build something? It's like all of the people were working together to defeat the zombies and survive, and then to rebuild - but why can't we do that without a antagonist?