Posted by Cynthia Spataro on February 6, 2013 at 1:43 pm
The groaning, dragging feet, rotting flesh and eating brains paired with social commentary and existential pondering – well of course we need another zombie movie! In the world of horror, there can never be enough zombie, vampire, monster or slasher films to satiate fans, but the trick is to do something different and that is no easy feat. Apparently, the film Warm Bodies has done just that to the tune of $20 million during Superbowl opening weekend. As Nicholas Hoult’s zombie “R” ambled on screen and into the hearts of teenaged girls this past weekend, the zombie lived on.
Initially upon viewing the trailer, the film seemed like an affront to everything that is beloved about the genre at its best – see the classics Night of the Living Dead or Dawn of the Dead. Zombies don’t have any self-awareness or internal dialogue…zombies don’t fall in love! However, satirical zombie films are becoming a genre of their own with films like Shaun of the Dead and Zombie Land, and are reminiscent (if not much more clever) than past horror satires. This was done with werewolf films in the 1980s with the likes of Teen Wolf and American Werewolf in London, and it only seems like a natural progression to take a serious horror trend and flip it to humor since it lends itself so easily to that. These differ from straight parody films such as Vampires Suck (parody of Twilight) which don’t create their own world and story, and are essentially dumbed-down versions of the original films.
For the new school of zombie parody, these films are worthwhile in their own right as they pay homage to the classics but create something new in the process.
It is no surprise then that the folks over at Summit Entertainment hit on something greatly lucrative with their film Warm Bodies during Superbowl weekend, as their biggest audience was under 25 and skewed female – who generally aren’t interested in watching football and would most likely hit theaters if something appealing is released. The zombie flick stands alone right now for the younger audience out there amongst serious Oscar noms and action flicks featuring aging stars. Since Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters turned out to be a bomb (not a surprise), this film seems like the obvious choice for the teen and early 20s audience.
Although this film will probably be a one-off, Summit is no stranger to the world of supernatural with their Twilight franchise that put them on the map, they will likely scout for more films in this vein – maybe the werewolf satires will be back for another go.
Some would say zombies make a comeback with this film, but they never went away. Contrary to some critics’ viewpoints that the genre of zombie flicks as a whole is hackneyed and exhausted, there have been many new takes on the living dead; one such case is the phenomenal hit show The Walking Dead which has broken all kinds of ratings records and inspired zombie series’ on other cable channels. Warm Bodies also proves the zombie genre is indeed alive…or at least death warmed over.
To watch the first four minutes, trailers and more visit the site