Saturday, June 22, 2013

Review: AMC 14 Westroads (formerly Rave) and World War Z

When I'm not out fishing, working or being with family, I enjoy watching movies, playing tabletop RPGs and other games and spending time with friends.

Nestled on the North side of Westroads mall is a 14 theatre... theatre... previously owned by Rave.

Since there are obviously no AMC pictures up yet, just replace that big sign with the AMC logo and yer good.

It was here I went with fellow moviegoers Dan N., Adam D. and Jon S. for World War Z.

Produced by and starring Brad Pitt, World War Z is a movie about survival and sacrifice against incredible zombie-rific odds. 

Before going further on my review of the theater and the movie, I want you to know that I'm a terrible critic. Go see it for yourself and make your own decisions. 

And, of course, I can't review a movie without the flagrant spoiler alert.

First, the theater. 


Old building, new feeling. People were friendly and helpful. Even the gal who came in to clean up after the show was bubbly and helpful, offering her near-overflowing trash can to anyone walking by that needed to throw something away. The floor wasn't sticky like I expected, which was cool.


The chairs squeaked and rocked. DBOX seating was only available in one theater. Sour Patch Kids - bag, not box - cost $4.25. That's about it.

Now, the movie.


The special effects on this movie excited me. I built up a lot of anticipation for this, wanting to see Brad's take on worldwide takeover of zombie hoards. Many people asked if I had read the book first, and frankly, I'm glad I didn't. I wanted to see the movie for what they could make of it. 

Dialogue was clear and to the point. They didn't overload it. The movie clipped along at a pace that wasn't hard to follow.

Another zombie pro: they ran like the dickens. I thought that was a clever twist, as I, in my sheltered existence, have not seen that variation before. Made the "swarm" that much more terrible to imagine as they cut down thousands of people.

All of this tied together with the suspense of avoiding a terrible demise at the mouth of zombies made the movie entertaining.

His amputating the hand of the Israeli commando was a great part of the movie. He doesn't think, he just acts, then he counts to check if she changes. Very intense.


Within the first 5 minutes, there was a noticeable mistake. Laying in bed, the two daughter characters jump on them and Brad covers his head with his hands playfully. Cut to another angle, no hands on head. Cut back to previous, hands on head. Woops. Sounds small, but I noticed it. Womp womp.

Thank heavens the daughter found a hunting rifle in a closet of the RV. Too bad she was supposed to be getting her sister a drink. Kind of a strange scene insertion.

Several of the troops on the aircraft carrier during helicopter landing sequences were obviously CGI. I found myself thinking, "Well, I guess it is a lot cheaper to animate. That's cool." But it's not. I don't want to be thinking that during a movie!

Overall, the movie was far too cramped and rushed. I mentioned above that it is not hard to follow, and it isn't. What is Lane's UN training, and how does it apply? Who is this Terri and how did they meet? Wait, the president is dead? Jet fuel in the water? His family is ordered off the ship via phone call? SLOW DOWN AND MAKE THAT CRAP HAPPEN.

I expected this to be a trilogy. At this point, it looks like they bagged the trilogy idea and decided to end the movie with the montage of "we're still fighting, but now we've got deadly/non-deadly pathogen camouflage" that insinuates "it all works out in the end." 

On a scale of 1-10, 10 being "good flick" and 1 being "I'd rather be fishing", I give this movie a 6. 

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