Army of the Dead

Army of the Dead ★★★

Too long? Check. Gratuitous epilogue? Check. Stripped down covers of popular songs? Check. Constant speed ramping of footage? Yup, Army of the Dead is Zack Snyder at peak self-indulgence, for better or worse and having written, directed and shot it all himself, there's little need for a Snyder cut this time round. An ambitious zombie-heist hybrid, this is mindless summer blockbuster material at its finest, though being a Netflix original and given current affairs ​it's likely to find more of an audience at home.

The opening sequence is a rather magnificent exercise in tension, suspense and action that really grabs your attention, though it isn't able to sustain this momentum beyond this, with large plodding sections and character scenes that drag on unnecessarily, something that isn't help by the runtime which is about an hour too long for what is essentially a B-movie with an engorged budget. Genre fans with undemanding appetites ​will get their kicks out of this as it delivers on the promise of gory set-pieces and competently helmed action but we're at a point now where for a zombie movie to stand out from the ever growing crowd of infected it needs to do more than just recycle old tropes, even if they are done with a nod and a wink. Snyder is clearly building off Romero and his own remake of Dawn of the Dead but hardly bringing anything new to the table, something that a much cleverer and more concise effort like One Cut of the Dead managed to do with much less.

Dave Bautista continues to impress as a serious dramatic actor, already lightyears ahead of other former-wrestler-in-Hollywood peers with his impressive resume and the decision to fill the remaining cast with actors based on what they bring to the table rather than their box office draw is admirable. A highly enjoyable way to spend two and a half hours, but that's about it.

Netflix UK.

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