'Dawn of the Dead' marked Zack Snyder's big screen debut, and his popularity may have grown tremendously since then, but none of his later work has managed to match the level of his shocking debut feature. . That's why he wanted so much to see 'Army of the Dead', his return to zombie cinema, which is also his first collaboration with Netflix.
It will be next May 21 when the film arrives on Netflix, although a week before you will have the opportunity to see it in theaters, and I suspect that the big screen will suit you very well. For my part, I have already been able to enjoy it at home and I do not think it reaches the same level as its debut, although that does not mean that it is very good, since we are facing a wild and most entertaining film that and also has various anthological scenes.
Snyder flying free
I remember that in the talk with Snyder in which I had the opportunity to participate, the filmmaker stressed that one of his goals with 'Army of the Dead' was to see to what extent he could twist the tropes of zombie cinema before breaking them, something that he could not takes time to perceive on screen. For better and for worse, we are facing a very ambitious film that has no problem playing with various common elements in this type of proposal.
That makes 'Army of the Dead' less vibrant than 'Dawn of the Dead'. It is true that the forceful start puts us in a situation and that the great initial credits prepare us for an explosion of violence, but then the sense of urgency takes much longer to arrive for the benefit of a story with different fronts but in which to the moment of truth returns to weigh above all the story of a father trying to reconcile with his daughter.
Of course, there I was very grateful that Snyder lowered a little that intensity that he defines in his cinema to try to offer a slightly more human vision of what he is telling us. Relax, that does not mean that he betrays himself, but that he modulates everything better so that it does not end up being nonsense in terms of tone when approaching a film that is more marked than any other by his presence .
And it is Snyder who works in 'Army of the Dead' as a producer, co-writer, camera operator, cinematographer and director. There is not a large study limiting his vision here as could happen in the case of Warner and his contributions to superhero cinema, and the first pleasant consequence of this is that there are no strange gaps in the narrative, the kind that can perhaps be fixed with an extended version but that should never have existed.
In 'Army of the Dead' it is clear that everything Snyder wanted is in the film, hence the footage of him shoots up to almost two and a half hours to let in narrative terms everyone has time to breathe. Obviously there are more important plots than others and better developed characters -but all have their opportunity to shine-, but there is that unity that his cinema does not always show off and that helps to overlook that the mythology he proposes is sometimes get a little out of hand.
You can tell from the movie that Snyder thinks he's creating little less than his ultimate zombie play. And I say work because the universe of 'Army of the Dead' is not going to be limited to this film, since a prequel centered on the character played by Matthias Schweighöfer is also underway - it was all right to dedicate it to him, since Ludwig is the best character of the function- and an animated series about the fall of Las Vegas after the zombie outbreak.
Much to celebrate in 'Army of the Dead'
It will be then when we have a much broader vision of this universe and perhaps the fact that the contrast between two types of zombie does not stop working will be compensated. Some end up being little less than filler and in the others an attempt is made to delve a little into their hierarchy in a way that is not particularly satisfactory. This leads to certain moments in the central section of 'Army of the Dead' in which interest suffers.
It is not that at any time the film sinks, but it is one of the main reasons why it does not reach 'Dawn of the Dead'. Before that we had had a kind of mix between 'Suicide Squad' and 'Ocean's 11' for the formation of that crazy mission that takes a group of mercenaries to Las Vegas to recover a sick amount of money.
That in turn serves to create a stimulating gallery of characters who bring what the film requires of them. I have already highlighted Schweighöfer, but it would be unfair to overlook the rest - even if it is fair to say that the thing about the plans of whoever hires these mercenaries is perhaps the weakest link in the film - including a Dave Bautista who maybe not.