Warm Bodies is a classic love story of star crossed lovers. In this case it’s an undead zombie boyfriend ‘R’ (Nicholas Hoult) and a very alive girlfriend ‘Julie’ (Teresa Palmer). Leave the Twilight references there because they are definitely not in the same ballpark.
Some epidemic or other has changed the world as we know it and the humans led by Julie’s Dad, ‘Grigio’ (John Malkovich), live inside a high walled commune while many of the infected zombie types have taken residence in the local airport. When a group of friends from the commune, including Julie, have to go to the outside world to get supplies, that’s when the fun starts. To cut it short, ‘Julie’ meets ‘R’ and she makes his cold dead heart beat again.
Ok, that’s pretty straight forward. We’re introduced to this world by R’s inner monologue and his coherence plays beautifully against what others see of R, grunting and shuffling along. The comedy is built up by melding with R is thinking and what is actually happening on screen. He brings Julie to his hideaway to keep her safe, she thinks he’s by kidnapping her. Also, a Shakespeare-esque balcony scene is used to hilariously good effect.
Warm Bodies also features some great one liners, great subtleties in the script and a fantastic soundtrack. How many zombies do you know with an awesome vinyl collection?
Jonathan Levine has done an amazing directing job on Warm Bodies and has perfectly combined the humour, romance and background story to great effect. Palmer is great as the all American good girl and after this Hoult should be spoken of as the guy from ‘Warm Bodies’, not ‘About a boy’ or ‘Skins’.
I’ve seen a fair few of the Oscar contenders but Warm Bodies is my favourite film of 2013 so far. Attention film makers: don’t bother trying to make anything else in this genre. This is the ultimate Zom-Rom-Com.