Let me start by saying I am a huge fan of the Max Brooks book World War Z. When it was announced that Brad Pitt was taking the reins for the film adaptation, I knew it was in good hands, and I also knew it would probably not be very similar to the book, I was expecting a movie that took place in the same reality as the book. The film hit a snag when it required a few months of reshoots prompting the movie going world to assume it was because the film sucked. But despite this bad pre-release hype, the film went on to become one of the biggest hits of the summer and exceed all expectations.
Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt), a former United Nations investigator, has been called back into action after a deadly virus begins spreading across the globe turning people into raging monsters. Leaving his family behind, Lane travels the planet to find the source of the infection and perhaps find the first step towards a cure.
There are definitely legions of naysayers out there against World War Z, but this was absolutely one of my favorite films of the year. It perfectly captures the spirit and atmosphere of the book and gives us a fast paced, intelligent and terrifying thrill ride that defied expectations. Pitt is excellent as usual as the desperate and innovative Lane, and he really infuses the character with an everyman essence that is totally relatable, especially when leaving his family behind. The story is excellent and tense and I really could have sat for another 1-2 hours in this world. I was hoping for the much talked about original ending to the film to be included on the disc but alas it is not there. The film is slightly extended by about 7 minutes with some extra gore and violence and I must say the extra stuff really did help the film feel a little more appropriately within the horror genre. The special effects must also be applauded here; the swarming of the zombies is very unique and original and is executed with an amazing clarity and realism that made it stunning to watch and a fascinating new take on the genre favorite monsters.
The Blu-ray is just what a summer blockbuster should be with a great transfer that is perfectly indicative of the filmmakers’ intentions. Excellent clarity, amazing detail, dusty windblown visuals and an immersive and often unsettling soundtrack make World War Z a winner on all fronts. Highly recommended.
Available now on Blu-ray and DVD.