Friday, July 6, 2012

World War Z Script Review

Short Review:
The slow-paced script can't balance the flashback heavy sequences with any urgent goal in the present. Unfortunately it drags along like a life-less zombie itself.
We meet Gerry and his family, when the script opens with them trying to escape Philadelphia. Zombie hordes run over the town and the military forces try to fight them back.They are headed north in the hopes the cold will keep the Zombies at bay. Two years pass, Gerry and his family return to the destroyed city of Philadelphia, trying to rebuild his life after the Zombie Infection. On page 20 Gerry is offered a job by the UN to write a report on the Zombie War, find out who was responsible. He starts - although his wife is against it - interviewing people to determine the cause of the Zombie infection. The script utilizies flashbacks to convey the individual stories, that are told to Gerry. Quickly it becomes clear, that no government really wants him to finish that report, that they are afraid of his findings. Gerry travels to China, where the infection started. Although the government nuked the infected zones, it spread via illegal organ transplantation to Germany. But even in Berlin most all officials brush off Gerry. In between the interviews, we see flashbacks to the hard time Gerry and his family spent up north. Next stop for Gerry is Israel, where the Mossad figured out first was what happening in China. Finally he finds out, that General Radeker devised a plan to save half of humanity by using the other half as bait for the Zombies. Back in the US Gerry writes his report, revealing that delay, self-centeredness, greed and ignorance caused the outbreak and spread of the Zombie plague. Consequently his report is gutted and censored, after Gerry handed it in. But he takes one uncensored copy and publishes it to show what really happenend.

- The movie takes place after everything happened, after they fought of the Zombies. This is an interesting point of narration, but seems a little dull - especially in the second act. Nothing really happens in the plot, Gerry only discovers little clues all over the world about what happened in the past. So, what are the stakes? What is the goal?
- On the final pages Gerry tells us that greed, ignorance, egoism caused the Zombie plague. I am not so sure, that I want to watch two hours of Brad Pitt interviewing some people to come to that conclusion. It might work in the subtlety of a novel, but feels rather forced in a movie script. It may sound strange, but if he had uncovered some really disturbing things, facts that twisted the whole truth, it could have been different. Greed and egoism are themes, weaved into the plot of a story, not something you should talk about so openly.
- The rewrites might be a good thing for the movie as Lindelof knows how write heavy-handed action. While the original premise is rather interesting, a little more lifeblood can turn this into a great project.

The Project:
World War Z will star Brad Pitt (who is also producing) as Gerry. Called a 'genre changing' zombie movie, it will be directed by Marc Foster (Kite Runner, Quantum of Solace). Recently news broke that heavy re-shooting has started, including 7 weeks of shooting and a re-write by Damon Lindelof. points to director Marc Foster as the man to blame for the re-shoots. Although he has a good track record with smaller drama films like Kite Runner or Finding Neverland, he seems to lack the skills to direct a massive, action-oriented movie. We will find out June 2013!


  1. This is gonna sound stupid, but does any1 know if there's a Zombie DRAMA movie? a decent one, you know like vampire dramas

    1. Hi there,

      thanks for visting my blog!
      I think there are no 'decent' one, but a few seem to be in production. You might want to check out "In the Flesh" by BBC3 or 'Maggie' with Chloe Moretz.
      Hope that helps...