Movie Review: Warm Bodies

Posted: February 7, 2013 in movie reviews, movies
Tags: , , , , , ,

Warm Bodies is not your run-of-the-mill, post-apocalyptic, supernatural, teen romance. It’s entertaining and surprisingly fresh and hilarious. Well you know as hilarious as “zombies who were once people but are now trying to kill the human race movies” can be.

Warm Bodies - Movie Posters


Warm Bodies
Directed By: Jonathan Levine
Starring: Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer, Rob Corddry, John Malkovich, Dave Franco, Analeigh Tipton

Premise: After some unexplained epidemic, majority of the human race are now zombies, feasting on survivors brains for sustenance. There are two types of zombies, the fondly named “Corpses,” and the “Bonies” who are basically full-blown evil, walking skeletons. After attacking a group of renegade teenagers who were foraging for medical supplies, R (Nicholas Hoult), a lonely teenage zombie, finds himself feasting on a boy (Dave Franco) with memories of his girlfriend still lodged in his brain. He finds himself rescuing the girl, Julie (Teresa Palmer), from the other zombies, much to his and her surprise. He takes her back to his lair, under the guise that she is also an undead and thus a romance begins to blossom. R finds himself with thoughts and feelings he’s never experienced before. Is there a way to cure this epidemic? Will Julie love R back? And if she does how will she convince her father, the ultimate zombie hunter, that R is not evil?


My Review: The thing I loved best about Warm Bodies was that it was a comedy first, and a schmaltzy teen romance second. I understand that movies have a certain demographic they want to cater to and thus they have to commit to certain plot points: star crossed lovers, extraordinary circumstances, bad boys, daddy’s little girl, a kiss involving some kind or wet substance (rain, water…alcohol). Warm Bodies seemed to take all these things and just have fun with them. It didn’t take itself too seriously. It wasn’t melodramatic, or full of angst, or have breathy teenagers (I’m looking at you Twilight) or girls who cry and cry and cry and become weak because their lover goes away (seriously Twilight, get your act together). Instead the characters and actors brought an exciting electricity to the story. It was a story you wanted to laugh with, roll your eyes with, and be in on the joke with.

Warm Bodies stars a too-good-looking-to-be-a-zombie, Nicholas Hoult, as R. R is sensitive, self-conscious, and sarcastic, with a self-deprecating sense of humor. He’s pretty much everything you want in a guy except for the whole being undead thing. Then again, if you can find a zombie that wants to rescue you after eating your boyfriend he could be a keeper because apparently it’s a turn-on for some people. R is lonely and lost, and trying to find his way in the world. He just wants someone to talk to, and that ultimately is what makes our protagonist relatable. Zombie or not. Hoult is great at the thousand yard stare. He has a way of looking at nothing, and yet you still get the sense of what he’s thinking and feeling. His voice is soft and soothing and we are always in his head. He also has perfect comedic timing.

Teresa Palmer, as Julie, is also a breath of fresh air. She’s feisty, opinionated, and has this effervescent spark about her. She’s had tragedy and darkness around her but instead of letting it destroy her, it feeds her. It’s a fresh turn from other dark heroine’s in YA movies or books (re: Hunger Games, Beautiful Creatures, Divergent, etc). Though Palmer had a few issues with hiding her Australian accent, she felt like a teenager and spoke like a teenager. Julie and her friend, the charming and refreshing Analeigh Tipton, talked about boys, put on make-up, and did the things normal teenagers do, only just with guns close at hand. This was also a nice turn of events. Even amidst great tragedy and turmoil, sometimes the world can go on as normal. Well, as normal as trying-to-make-your-zombie-boyfriend-look-human-by-putting-make-up-on-him-so-you-can-take-him-to-your-zombie-killer-father-and-convince-him-the-zombies-are-changing, is.

This movie wasn’t perfect by far. In many instances it was young and silly, especially when John Malkovich is being John Malkovich. Seriously, someone get that guy a campfire and a flashlight. But Warm Bodies biggest weakness was that ending. It went from bittersweet to cheesy like fast cars go from 0 to 60. However, given the type of movie cheesiness is expected and forgivable, especially when everything else about the movie is fresh, bright, and funny…just with, you know…brain-eating zombies.


Rating: 3 ½ stars.




  1. Good review. I’m glad you called it a comedy first. I’m trying to talk my wife into seeing it with me. I’ll just tell her it’s really a comedy (yeah honey, Gladiator is really a love story at it’s core). She hates dumb endings though. hmmmmm…

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