Before I watched this trailer for Warm Bodies, I called it “zombie Twilight starring Jennifer Lawrence‘s boyfriend and a Kristen Stewart lookalike.” But now I’m calling it “exactly what I want to go see this Valentine’s Day.”
When I first heard of this movie a year or so ago, I was kinda hard on it. To be fair, the promo image looked exactly like the first Twilight movie poster, and at the time we had no idea what good actors Nicholas Hoult and Teresa Palmer were. But now Nicholas is something of a sex symbol thanks to girlfriend J. Law, and Teresa would be our choice to replace K. Stew if she actually decides to leave Hollywood.
Not to mention, this movie looks wickedly funny. Directed by Jonathan Levine (50/50), it’s the story of R (Hoult), your typical zombie who falls in love with human resistor Julie (Palmer). See, in the future most people are dead, and humans and zombies warily coexist. Because the real threat is the “bonies”—basically, walking skeletons that have completely succumbed to the lust for human flesh. At least R and his groaning pal M (Rob Corddry) are somewhat aware of their nature.
But just as R has gotten used to being part of the infected undead, he falls for Julie, and his heart starts beating again. As he gets to know her better and meets other humans including her boyfriend (Dave Franco), he starts curing himself. All the zombies do… but that’s not good enough for Julie’s resistance-leader dad (John Malkovich), who’s seen enough George Romero movies that he’d rather nuke ‘em all.
On top of all that, Warm Bodies is smart and unorthodox. Because R starts out only grunting, a lot the beginning of the movie looks to take place through his inner monologue. It brings to mind a similarly snarky apocalypse movie, Zombieland starring Jesse Eisenberg. In the trailer alone, you can see them skewering several cliches from your typical supernatural teen romance. Also, I’m officially crushing on Nicholas Hoult now.
Photo: Summit Entertainment