Jakob Mathews’s review published on Letterboxd:
I’ve honestly grown to really like Zack Snyder as a person; I feel like he’s worked hard to get to where he’s at and he’s proved himself immensely and seems to be an all around good guy. Rewatching his first film Dawn of the Dead was really nice, because I completely forgot how good of a remake it is, despite its obnoxiously saturated green and blue hues. However, it pains me whenever I see a film from him that just doesn’t click for me.
Army of the Dead opens with a very strong opening credits scene that is both in slow motion and is completely aware of its goofiness and rides with it; it’s a great way to open your film (AND WITH RICHARD CHEESE). Then the film keeps going, filled to the brim with two-dimensional characters with little to nothing going for them despite a quirk or a half-baked motivation. I really liked the overall concept (the US has contained the zombies to one perimeter and plans to nuke it while a covert operated team attempts to steal millions from a bank vault in the middle of Vegas; brilliant), but it unfortunately never reaches its upmost potential, either never reaching satisfying moments of absurdity or getting so close only to back away into its self seriousness. Also, I love that Zack is a credited DP, but the soft focus, depth-of-field cinematography he practices really got obnoxious fast and was a hindrance on the film’s quality.
I liked a lot of the gory moments, the zombie animals were dope, and Dave Bautista is the best wrestler-turned-actor of recent memory, but a lot of what happens feels so boring and bland in comparison thanks to its unbelievably bloated runtime. It pains me to say, because the concept is excellent and Zack has great ideas, but most of what was here either bored me or frustrated me due to it not going the extra mile to be 80s action/zombie craziness.