Over the past few days, I’ve had my own little Zombie Apocalypse!
and I watched I Am Legend and Resident Evil: Extinction, and I read one of my Christmas presents: World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max Brooks.
I Am Legend: Ah well, 2/3rds of a good movie is better than nothing. Smith is great, the CG is crap, they tacked on a Hollywood Ending, and missed the entire bloody point of the title.
Resident Evil: Extinction: Mad Max meets Dawn of the Dead, with eye-candy aplenty (Milla Jovovich, Oded Fehr, Ali Larter). Not enough actual zombies (although some nice shots of a huge horde in the desert), but plenty of action scenes. Not a good film by any means, but fun in a brain-dead kinda way.
Best of all, though was World War Z:
A novel written in documentary style, as the “after-action report” from people all over the world, ten years after the end of the so-called “plague years.” The book is organized chronologically, from the initial outbreak (and cover-up) in China, to the flood of refugees spreading the virus world-wide, and the reactions of various nations as they realize what is happening.
The book details the initial panic, the apocalypse (including a limited nuclear exchange between two countries who lose their shit), and the eventual re-grouping and reclamation. Perhaps even more intriguing are the glimpses of the post-war world, where Tibet is the world’s most populous nation, the Russians have reverted to a “Holy Empire”, China has had a civil war, and Cuba is the world’s leading economy.
Brilliant stuff. Brooks manages to convey familiar, panicked realism to something inherently unbelievable. There are sequences that are positively chilling, and others that are just plain COOL. I can’t recommend this one enough. It’s in paperback now. Run out and get it.