What Do You Make Of The New 'World War Z' Trailer? (Who Knew Fana Mokoena Was In It?)

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by Tambay A. Obenson
November 9, 2012 9:06 AM
11 Comments
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I realize that the usual studio approach to trailers is to emphasize the spectacle, especially when it comes to movies like this; but this looks insane. And not necessarily in a good way. These zombies are on steroids; or maybe we could call them super zombies!

In short, I'm not immediately sold. I need to see another trailer that's less frenetic. 

As someone who has not read the book that the film is based on, I don't really have any idea what to expect here; I know what the story is, but based on the many comments I've read on the web since the trailer was released last night, fans of the book aren't at all happy with what they see, with many of them saying that the footage looks absolutely nothing like what's described in the book. 

Then again, does that ever happen? This is director Marc Foster's own interpretation of the material. Whether or not it works won't be known with certainty until the film is out.

Stylistically, a review of the script I read compared it to Children Of Men, a film I love. I'm not sure I really get that vibe from this first trailer.

Brad Pitt stars as Gerry Lane, a worker at the United Nations, searching the globe for information that can stop a zombie outbreak that is bringing down nations.

By the way, I thought Anthony Mackie was in this; he was offered a part, but I guess no deal was worked out. 

I was surprised to see South African actor, Fana Mokoena, feature in the trailer. You may remember him from Safe House, Man On Ground and Hotel Rwanda.

But it's Brad Pitt starring and Marc Foster behind the camera, working from a beloved work of fiction, so I expect this will be one of the most talked about summer movies in 2013.

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11 Comments

  • Troy | November 11, 2012 2:18 PMReply

    Do we have a situation where a director wanted to do his own zombie apocalypse movie and used a popular source material to get it greenlit? R rated movies do lower numbers, makes sense. Will Genre movie craze ever end? Their should be no more genre movies. Only stage plays are original. If the audience controlled the studios no one would ever have a movie they liked, we have terrible taste and are only interested in bits and pieces of which could never amount to a movie. Who the hell reads books about zombies? That's like Brad Pitt reading a tabloid/blog article about Kim Kardashian. Celebrity meet pseudo celebrity. Human meet pseudo human. Haha, we are terrible.

  • Kelea | November 10, 2012 2:21 AMReply

    I can see why fans of the book are disappointed. This is one of those books that is just itching to be made into a movie. I've never read it but have heard about it and it gets recommended quite a bit. The premise of the book is very interesting. I mean why take out the one thing that separates this story from all the others. Oh and I'm also a bit tired of CGI being the "quick fix" for everything.

  • Celluloidread | November 9, 2012 4:39 PMReply

    Yes, it does look insane and at the moment that kind of works for me. In this particular genre, I look forward to mad, insane, crazy, globally destructive, never before seen approach then more of the same. It might not make much logically sense and they do look a little fake, but, in my opinion, all CGI looks fake. I just accept it. But I think we have to make a slight distinction between this and some of the films that have been mentioned. While similar in tone and atmosphere to other films in the genre, the plague victims in "28 Days Later" and "I Am Legend", were not zombies. Meaning they didn't die and then come back from the dead as undead with a never-ending desire for blood and flesh. Forester's interpretation looks to be more closely related to Zach Snyder's remake of "Dawn of the Dead." On steroids. And all big budget Hollywood movies have some degree of re-writes and re-shoots. Not necessarily a good thing, but doesn't necessarily spell disaster either. My expectations for Hollywood are always pretty low so I'm usually not disappointed.

  • Donella | November 10, 2012 3:16 PM

    "Meaning they didn't die and then come back from the dead as undead with a never-ending desire for blood and flesh." Well, if this is going to be technical, zombies (as in the Haitian kind), did not come back from the dead. They were never dead, they were victims of a drug-induced coma who were mistaken for dead. But many people have interpreted zombies differently--dead, undead, living victims of radiation, living victims of alien or Earth virus, living victims of chemical warfare, dead victims of supernatural possession. No matter. The focus on CGI and rapid movement, even superhuman movement is the turnoff.

  • Afterthoth | November 9, 2012 7:38 PM

    I don't see much similarity to "28 Days Later" or "I Am Legend." Those films were about isolation. This film seems to focus on preserving the family.

  • sergio | November 9, 2012 4:57 PM

    "...all CGI looks fake. I just accept it." Why should you? The old fashioned way of doing practical special effects on camera is still the best way

  • Donella | November 9, 2012 11:55 AMReply

    Several disconnects between the book (which fans really love) and the movie, which has fans of the book skeptical. The book is a fiction written in a non-fiction style as a collection of one-on-one interviews by an employee of the UN who wants to know how people survived the zombie apocalypse-WWZ. of... so it is a mock non-fiction. It's similar in style to studies of, say, the Vietnam War and how participants in that war survived, their experiences, and the aftermath. If Marc Forster had stuck to the style of the book, the movie would be a zombie apocalypse mockumentary (not humorous though) in the style of the History Channel or PBS. Brad Pitt would have been the protagonist/interviewer, examining the aftermath of WWZ, the military and political science, political bumbling, and international response to the zombie epidemic. I would really have liked this myself. However, my understanding is that Forster chose to create a traditional action/adventure storyline--similar to the many other zombie apocalypse movies we've already seen. He's doing what's already been done. Also, the zombies in Brooks' WWZ book are the slow-moving (George Romero's Dead) kind, rather than the 28 Days Later/I Am Legend super-human multi-powerful kind. Max Brooks, the author of World War Z, has already distanced himself saying he has nothing to do with the film production. Not a good sign.

  • Chris | November 9, 2012 10:44 AMReply

    Im a huge fan of the book...this looks nothing like the book...nothing like the book. Why does hollywood buy a property only to ignore the source material...and then you got cg zombies.!?!? Wtf and im not gonna even discuss the fact that its pg13...really a pg13 movie about a (spoiler alert..maybe cause it doesent seem like they are following the book) 10 plus year worldwide war with zombies that decimate a good 70% of the worlds population...wtf

  • sergio | November 9, 2012 11:55 AM

    Exactly! It's going to be rated PG-13. I mean Walking Dead pushes the boundaries every week and that show is on BASIC cable. And those CGI zombies in this film and the ones in I Am Legend have NO impact. They're CARTOONS! You spend $150 million on a film and can't afford to get a bunch of extras in makeup? Furthermore they had to push back the release date from this Xmas to next summer because what they had sucked so badly that they bring in new writers and schedule 8 WEEKS more of re-shoots . Enough said.

  • BluTopaz | November 9, 2012 10:03 AMReply

    LOVE ZOMBIE MOVIES! Ok calming down...these zombies make 28 Days ones look lazy and that's my favorite undead flick! Very exciting, but I don't want to hear 'DADDY I'M SCARED' throughout the entire movie though.

  • Tamara | November 9, 2012 9:32 AMReply

    will the zombie craze ever end? those things were moving like ants on speed. the trailer looks good.

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