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Brad Pitt vs. a zombie apocalypse? Bring it on....
Paramount / 116 Minutes / 2013 / Rated PG-13 / Street Date: September 17, 2013
The universe certainly doesn’t need another zombie movie, but leave it to Brad Pitt to make it work. Even though post-apocalyptic dystopian dramas have become plainly overutilized – zombies, it would seem, have indeed taken over - Marc Forster’s taut, pummeling World War Z is impressive escapist summer fare, a megaplex entertainment that is diverting, exciting, and intermittently terrifying. In fact, it does what so much contemporary zombie fare does not: it makes undead dismemberment and torture fun again.
We meet Gerry (Pitt) over pancakes in his family’s posh home, where he dotes on his adorable daughters and exchanges loving looks with his wife as though nothing in their world could possibly be amiss. Then as the four of them head out for a drive, things change on a dime, and they begin a frantic operation to get the hell out of the city and to a more rural locale where Gerry is tracked down by the U.N. operatives who used to employ him.
See, Gerry had to get out of ‘the business’ because being around his family was more important than chasing down baddies in the kinds of ramshackle locales even interpreters are scared to set foot in. But (and remember, this is Hollywood, after all), Gerry is the world’s best bet: he and his girls are jetted off to a military aircraft carrier where he and an elite team of scientists and military men can figure out how to combat this mysterious zombie plague that threatens mankind’s very existence.
In synopsis form, World War Z likely sounds like just another “BRAINS!” pastiche of violent, drooling mumbo jumbo, but the film comes together in a rockin’ good way. It’s not without its moments of ridiculousness – Brad Pitt always seems to be dressed in his Gucci best as he bayonets approaching zombies with ease – but Marc Forster knows how to make a movie that aims to do nothing more than blankly entertain, and World War Z is a product of this that is way more braindead fun than it has any right to be.