This is a reprinting of our Nov. 12, 2012 review of Warm Bodies, as the film hits theaters tomorrow, Feb. 1, 2013.
The Warm Bodies book was written by Isaac Marion and tells the story of a zombie named R (Nicholas Hoult) who falls in love with human character Julie (Teresa Palmer).
This zombie world is a different one than, say, the creatures you’ll see in The Walking Dead on AMC. For one, Warm Bodies‘ zombies can get out a few English words. They can also run and fight at a capability similar to the humans. For us, it took a little getting used to after seeing such a different set of zombies as the ones you see on the aforementioned TV show. Nevertheless, we respect this different zombie lore and found its differences served the story well.
Adult actor Rob Corddry plays R’s best friend M who is also a zombie, while John Malkovich plays Julie’s father General Grigio. The eye candy in this film, besides Hoult (if you like the zombie types), is Perry Kelvin played by Dave Franco. Perry is Teresa’s boyfriend up until R kills him and eats his brains out. In this zombie world, eating a human’s brains allows you to see and feel their memories. It’s the sole way of dreaming when you’re a zombie, as R explains at one point.
R’s consumption of Perry’s brains helps him see a happy life with Julie, which is part of the reason why R falls in love with her. The majority of the film is taken up with R’s mission to persuade Julie into liking him and seeing him as someone who holds feelings and kindness. Warm Bodies is anchored by the narration of R which adds a good amount of comedy and context to several scenes.
As you can see in the trailer (below), the film has a quirky feel that it plays into whether it’s using the narration or just having fun with zombie lore. There’s also the always-creepy R who relentlessly tries to be less freakish. His attempts add a lot to the story.
Even though this writer didn’t read the book (yet!), he found Warm Bodies to be a fun zombie story with a love story that you’ll want to root for. Despite the odd premise (“Zombie boyfriend,” as described by one of Julie’s friends), the story is a compelling and believable one. We understand that it diverts from the book’s ending, but the way it ended in the film was very fulfilling and heartwarming.
Rated: PG-13 (for zombie violence and some language)
Warm Bodies opens in theaters on February 1, 2013.
We spoke with Marion, Hoult, and Palmer at the film’s press junket recently. Read highlights from our interview!
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