The Chicksters were lucky enough to score free tickets to a special sneak screening of “Warm Bodies” last night and lucky is definitely the right word. Hosted at the Alamo Drafthouse by one of our favorite local heroes, Girlie Night’s Sarah Pitre, we were initially skeptical that anyone could pull off a zombie romance. As Cher of Clueless might have said, “I mean, the undead—ew—like, we’re expected to swoon?”
Haven’t heard of this movie? Well just imagine a zombie version of the movie “Twilight” with better writing and a darker sense of humor. Yes. It’s a story about a girl (Teresa Palmer), who looks a lot like a blonde Kristen Stewart (one audience member even called her a “shitty Kristen Stewart” which just makes us laugh), who falls in love with a zombie. Sound disgusting and strange? Well, strangely it isn’t. It’s actually awesome. The actor who plays R, Nicholas Hoult, somehow manages to be endearing and human despite the fact that he’s dead, decaying and sometimes painfully awkward in ways that only a zombie would be. And it’s funny. This is no easy thing to sell, but the actors rise to the challenge and somehow manage to portray sympathetic zombies. R eats brains but is “conflicted about it” and Rob Corddry, who plays M, quickly evolves into a zombie that you can’t help but like. You even somehow like him when he’s still lacking in the human department. In fact, R and M don’t feel too far removed from some of the guys we’ve known. Good-intentioned yet creepy, monosyllabic, and as in R’s case, frequently wearing hoodies with unidentifiable stains on them. (And did we mention never washing their jeans?)
The story also isn’t bad. Sure, it requires that you suspend a large amount of disbelief, but somehow the writer/director, Jonathan Levine, takes a story idea that seems insurmountable and makes it work. It also didn’t hurt that Levine took a cue from “Daybreakers” and threw in a common enemy that the zombies and humans could unite over.
So overall, the story of a zombie romance is very entertaining and you should definitely see it when it comes out Feb. 1st. It may even be Valentine’s Day worthy. Turns out, even zombies need love.