This Rotten Week: Predicting World War Z and Monsters University Reviews

By Doug Norrie 2013-06-16 07:18:32discussion comments
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This Rotten Week: Predicting World War Z and Monsters University Reviews image
Today is the day to put all of your daddy issues aside and celebrate the guy who was half responsible for bringing you into this world. In honor of those fathers out there we’ve got zombies taking over the world and monsters heading off to college.

Just remember, I'm not reviewing these movies, but rather predicting where they'll end up on the Tomatometer. Let's take a look at what This Rotten Week has to offer.

World War Z
Anyone who’s read Max Brooks’ novel World War Z probably wondered how Hollywood could adapt his creation, a collection of interviews with the survivors of the zombie apocalypse, into a movie. The book is excellent: so well-structured, detailed and layered that you’d think Brooks actually did survive the zombie takeover and lived to write about it. The thing about the book though is there’s no real protagonist, instead spreading itself out over a number of voices and stories. (There’s for sure an antagonist, or a couple of billion of them at least). Which made me wonder how the hell they’d turn this thing into a movie, how they’d boil down the global impact of the zombies on the political, economic and social structures of our planet.

But they did, and they’ve got Brad Pitt looking great doing it. Using the novel merely as a baseline, Pitt is a UN worker commissioned to find a cure for the zombie “disease”. He travels the world looking for the answer to the problem of a few billion crazy people eaters running amok all over Earth. Where the book looks reflectively at how the world responds to its imminent internal destruction, the movie puts us in the middle of the action, and visually it looks superb. Other zombie movies are typically content offering a glimpse of the small world the protagonist occupies (often a major city, think: I Am Legend or 28 Days Later) or focusing on the human condition within the survivors (think: The Walking Dead). This film appears to cover the global landscape and the sheer volume of hysteria. How would the entire world react? Hint: not good.

Directed by Marc Forster (Quantum of Solace-64%, The Kite Runner-65%), World War Z has overcome a bunch of setbacks to end up a quality flick. First hurdling the book adaptation, there have been late game rewrites, extensive reshoots, animosity between Pitt and Forster and release date delays. Those are some massive problems and usually signal a critical disaster. Not this film. Early reviews are positive with the Tomatometer sitting at 76% through about twenty-five reviews. I think we see the score drop a bit over the course of the week, as is usually the case, but having it finish above fifty percent would be a massive accomplishment for a flick with so many setbacks. I didn’t think they’d be able to turn Brooks’ book into a quality flick, but I might stand corrected. The Rotten Watch for World War Z is 67%

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