Friday, February 22, 2013

For 2013 - Vampires Out, Zombies In

For 2013 - Vampires Out, Zombies In

If you haven’t noticed yet, I believe the public’s movie and TV viewing fascination; appetite if you will (pardon the pun) for Vampire stories may be coming to a peak. It doesn’t mean these types of programs and films are going away anytime soon or completely for that matter. No, just a little less exposure of these somewhat predictable, overly androgynous quasi romantic stories to take up our increasingly valued sequestered time. Just a little less of unnatural special effects by those conveniently chiseled handsome men and exquisitely gorgeous women zipping from tree to tree in the blink of an eye to mesmerize us………….. (“Oooh I wish I could do that, the zipping part………… not the Vampiring part”).

Just a little less of Vampires retracting and extending their elongated pearly whites on command forewarning us that either something really bad is going to happen or its Vampire foreplay time again………… AND AGAIN. AND AGAIN. AND AGAIN.

After all, if you have been a follower of the “Twilight” films or HBO’s “True Blood” for any time at all you will see what I discovered that they both have by my estimation covered every single possible new ground and nuance on being a modern day Vampire, including covering most all of the social taboos and cultural mores that any screen writer could squeeze into a script specifically tailored with contemporary plot twists to maintain our short attention span.

So, where do we stand today on possible new Vampire story lines? Well, by my count, there are still two story areas left for these “children of the night” and their willingly naïve – gullible human counterparts to explore together.

One, Vamps learning the solution to walk with humans in the day light with matching cups of Starbucks cappuccinos after a fabulous luncheon outing at Spago Restaurant in Hollywood. And two, Vamps cultivating far better Vogue dressing - grooming techniques by utilizing their new found discovered reflections from their images in mirrors and pictures……………… At least give Editor Anna Wintour a reason to approve.

Of course I am kidding here because it’s obvious to all; there are no more areas for Vampires to explore.

So, who is going to take over that coveted number one spot from those stylized Vampires who look more like GQ and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit models for our horror viewing attention? What creature from the dark depths will be the new pursuer of human flesh?  What apocalyptic monster’s menu will humans become the filet mignon entre on their food chain?

Well, I believe the new crazed monster to claim that mantel to frighten us, to intrigue us and to seduce us by those Hollywood executive creative minds (is that an oxymoronic expression?) will be the mainstream film projects of our not so friendly, stuttering and grumpy, stiff peg legged moving but sometimes speedy, desperately needing a shower and absolutely needing a dental plan without co-pay “Zombies”.

Oh yes, starting all the way back in 1968 and Director George A. Romero debut of the cult classic creation ‘Night of the Living Dead”, zombie films have been for the most part been left largely unexplored by HW other than each year some slightly simple low budget independent type projects that hardly ever hit the big screen or they subsequently went directly to cable or DVD right after the final editing.

But in 2002, that changed with a fabulous updated reboot to this science fiction theme with “28 Days Later” and it's equally successful, smart and entertaining 2007 sequel “28 Weeks Later” which I highly recommend both. But what I believe made HW executives and film makers start to sit up and take real notice to the fertile untapped money making possibilities of these “flesh eating dead” to wreak unholy havoc on our collective big box office psyches is the highly entertaining dramatic weekly TV series “The Walking Dead” on AMC. 

Beginning just this month in February we had the first of more of these mainstream film efforts to come out this year with the release of “Warm Bodies” which is still currently in theaters.

Now if you are looking for a film to hide your hands over your face, this is not that type of Zombie film…….This is more of a kindlier and gentle type Zombie film, rooted in a romantic comedy plot line. Reference point, it’s similar to Zombieland.

I must say, I went to this film (Warm Bodies) a bit skeptical, thinking that it would not hold my interest, but overall it turned out to be mildly entertaining, with funny moments scattered throughout, with good direction – action and again at its core a romantic plot that subtly worked, ………..along with a few new twists and new turns on the nature of Zombie–ism do’s, don’ts and can’ts ………………….Is that a word I just created? Zombie-ism. …………Any way I digress.

So what else is on tap of the Zombie menu for this year and beyond?……Now, that was a poorly constructed visually descriptive question on my part. Once again, I digress.

Here are a few big and small efforts that pricked my coming soon interest flesh to a theater near you:

·        “Warm Bodies” – Nicholas Hout – February 1, 2013
·        “World War Z” – Brad Pitt – June 21, 2013****
·        “R.I.P.D.” -  Jeff Bridges – July 19, 2013****
·        “Invasion of the Not Quite Dead”  - Andrew Ellis – Oct (TBD) 2013
·        “Gallow Walkers” – Wesley Snipes – TBD
·        “Zombieland 2” - Woody Harrelson –TBD
·        “The 4th Reich” – TBD
·        “Army of the Dead” – TBD
·        “Boy Scouts verses Zombies” –TBD
·        “Dead By Dawn”
·        “Evil Dead” – TBD
·        “Infected” – Michael Madsen - TBD
·        “The Harvard Zombie Massacre” TBD
·        “Dead World”- TBD
·        “The Curse of The Buxom Strumpet” – Ian McKellen – TBD

****Could be a hit
Now I personally take special notice and draw your attention as well to the film “Gallow Walkers” for two distinct reasons. One the story is set in a Western genre……I love westerns, they can’t make enough of them for me………..EVER.  And two, not sure when Wesley Snipes made this film given that he is currently and has been for a while in a Pennsylvania prison for federal tax evasions……………………..But I digress once again.

With no release date for Gallow Walkers(Wesley’s release date from prison is July 19, 2013) the film is basically a western and is the story of a mysterious gunman named Aman (Snipes), who is the son of a nun, who broke her covenant with God to ensure her son’s survival. Her break with God curses the son to be hunted by all those who die by his hand - When he takes revenge on a gang that murdered his true love, the gang rises as a cursed crew of undead warriors………..

TRANSLATION, they are still basically zombies, only in this case (after viewing the trailer) these “The Good, The Bad And The Ugly-ish” Zombies have interestingly a rather advanced vocabulary for a change; with far better poetic etiquette and yet who still manage nevertheless to hunt him down (Aman) with mercilessly ruthlessness seeking their walking dead revenge, all the while with Wesley creating his character’s “Aman” persona in the mold of a previous film of his “Blade” and a western classic “The Outlaw Josey Wells”.

So there you have it.  Zombies will rule the box office earth this year.

Zalk to you zoon.

No comments:

Post a Comment