Reel Reviews: Zombie love has a heartbeat

Julie and R (Teresa Palma and Nicholas Hoult) complain about the in-flight food. - Summit Entertainment
Julie and R (Teresa Palma and Nicholas Hoult) complain about the in-flight food.
— image credit: Summit Entertainment

Who loves ya zombie?

Unfortunately R (Nicholas Hoult) doesn’t have much going for him. He spends his days and nights walking around the airport and has grunted conversations with his best friend M (Rob Corddry).

This sums up the bleakness of this zombie’s life until he meets a beautiful human named Julie (Teresa Palmer).

After saving her life from a zombie feeding frenzy, R feels it is his duty to protect her from certain death, or worse, life as one of the undead. During their brief time together something gets triggered inside of him, transforming this walking corpse slowly back to human.

Is love an exclusive emotion for humans only or can transforming zombies find it as well? Will R live happily ever after? Or will the ancient cliché of Dad entering the picture eliminate the teenage zombie?

We say: “Just because you’re dead doesn’t mean you don’t have feelings.”

HOWE: This week Mr. Taylor decided he didn’t want to watch Warm Bodies as he was so scared of Mama earlier in the week he couldn’t take a double dose of fright, so in his place I’m joined by a bloody, nice chap, John Dent. So John what did you think?

DENT: It was a delightfully different take on one of cinema’s most one dimensional character types. With zombies being so mainstream these days it’s refreshing to see a movie filmed from the perspective of the flesh eating monster, a grotesque and lovable youngster with an awkward crush.

HOWE: I was very impressed. I thought the story was very clever. It was a nice twist on the zombie genre and some little bits and pieces of it reminded me of Shaun of the Dead.

Most of the comedy comes from Hoult, not so much in the physical form, but more in the story that he is telling. He’s come a long way since staring in About a Boy with Hugh Grant back in 2002. Besides being the leading man in this, we will see him later in the year when he plays Jack the Giant Slayer.

DENT: I was positively amazed that eight years after an apocalypse, the airport (zombie stronghold) still had working escalators and the power to run a turntable. It was the perfect setup for a pink bunny and a drum.

HOWE: Yeah, I thought that too, but I’m not going to nitpick the little things. This could be a perfect Valentine’s gift for the young love age group as it’s rated PG.

Warm Bodies has a little bit for both parties: a love story for the girls and a little bit of gore and action for the boys.

DENT: I grinned from beginning to end. It wasn’t a hard-core, bloody and violent zombie movie, nor an amazing love story, nor an intensely gripping tale. It was quirky, fun and easy to watch. And the icing on the cake was it felt original.

— Dent gives Warm Bodies 3.5 chunks of brain out of 5.

— Howe gives it 3 tins of fruit salad out of 5.

The film is currently showing at the Galaxy Cinemas in Vernon.

— Peter Howe and Brian Taylor are movie reviewers living in Vernon, B.C. Their column, Reel Reviews, appears every Friday and Sunday in The Morning Star.


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