Army of the Dead

Army of the Dead

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: nobody does opening credits like Zack Snyder. In an alternative reality, he’s the natural successor to Saul Bass. Snyder’s latest is a true work of art, a glorious vision of pop and pastiche that is both aware of itself and the audience, delivering so much fun and so much gore that’s impossible to neglect. I’ll be returning to it on YouTube a lot. In fact, someone needs to make the supercut of all Snyder’s credit sequences, because that’s undoubtedly his best film.

About the rest of Army of Dead, the runtime seems to be the most common criticism, but I don’t mind it all (if you can watch three straight episodes of TV, this shouldn’t be a big deal). The issue— the real reason why you feel it so much— is because the pacing and the tone are all over the place. AoD wants to be both a serious zombie movie and a comedic zombie movie, and unfortunately the line isn’t tip-toed expertly, even if the overall presentation is, indeed, very compelling. The film drags when it focuses on melodrama— a product of the amount of set up required to deliver satisfying emotional pay-offs— and feels too fast— and perhaps too sparse— when it comes to doing the actual zombie killing. There’s a sense the film would’ve benefited from less plot lines and a more-fleshed out central narrative. By the time we get to the climax, there’s a sense some through-lines have been completely abandoned.

I also don’t see a point in zombies that are smart, have a sense of community, and obey basic hierarchy rules. If I’m not mistaken, that’s what we call ‘humans’. Sure, they’re super strong, but so is Bautista. So what’s the difference, really?

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