Jonathan Levine’s 50/50 was a solid film that tackled a difficult subject and tried to still be funny. It seems he’s applying the same principles to another genre that’s been oversaturated and difficult to pull off lately: zombies. When I first heard about Warm Bodies — staring Nicholas Hoult (X-Men: First Class) as a zombie who falls in love with a human teenager (Teresa Palmer) after eating her boyfriend’s brains and absorbing his memories — I wasn’t remotely optimistic about it. Another zombie movie? Ugh. Then I watched the trailer. Holy crap. This could actually be good.
Warm Bodies plays like a comedy and also stars Rob Corddry as a zombie and John Malkovich as a zombie hunter. There’s nothing I don’t like about that sentence. The film was moved up from its original release date to open on February 1st of next year, presumably as a Valentine’s Day date movie alternative.
Perhaps the most promising aspect of this is that it’s adapted from the Isaac Marion novel of the same name. Marion smartly introduced a more vicious form of zombie (the boney guys) so that the run-of-the-mill undead wouldn’t have to be the villains. It looks surprisingly favorable in a Zombieland way. If nothing else, it may help us forget the whack CGI in that World War Z footage.
There’s a shorter (but possibly better) cut of the Warm Bodies trailer available here.