'Bloodless Romance and Bloodless Carnage': Warm Bodies Leaves Reviewers Cold
In many respects, zombies are inherently funny. They're slow moving, grunting, dishevilled creatures of the undead whom no one seems to be able to get away from despite their laggard advancement. Sure, in great quantities they're pretty scary, and if they bite you you're doomed, but otherwise the zombie horror is a genre primed for parody and pastiche. Warm Bodies is one of these parodies and as reviews roll in, it appears it could have been done a little better.
Despite generally positive ratings from critics, plenty of faults were found. Starring Nicolous Hoult (About a Boy, Skins) and Teresa Palmer (Bedtime stories), as well as an appearance from John Malcovich, it's not doing terribly in terms of cast, but the general premise seems to have let it down somewhat. As the Village Voice points out, the novel the movie was based on is an incredibly loose adaptation of Romeo and Juliet. The general premise sounds a little off, but the Village Voice were most annoyed by how tame it was describing the central romance as 'bloodless' adding that "Nobody kisses anyone else until it becomes clear that both parties have pulses, and everyone gets to keep all their limbs."
Variety were a little more favourable considers it a zombie movie made for girls (and hitting cinemas in time for Valentine's Day, that judgement fits). "The pic keeps the horror quotient in check," they write, "while focusing on the femme-friendly comedy and romance angles, offsetting the plentiful moments of suspense with cutesy scenes." The Hollywood Reporter didn't hate it, and understood the angle it was going for, and while they enjoyed Hoult's performance, the most complimentary they could be about it as a whole was saying: "At its best, Warm Bodies paints a dead zone's slow awakening with gloomy giddiness, brimming with visual humor."