When I first saw that Army of the Dead was nearly 2.5 hours long, I wasn’t sure what we would be in for. Was it going to be another Snyder movie that just went on that bit too long?
Well, yes and no. Army of the Dead has a lot going for it. It’s a lot of fun and does have some poignant moments. However, it’s not without its flaws either, as we shall get to later.
The story sees a zombie escape confinement and run amok in Las Vegas. Luckily, the US government manages to contain the zombies in Vegas, walling the city off with shipping containers. What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas and all that, right?
Dave Bautista (“Blade Runner 2049”, “Guardians Of The Galaxy”) manages to escape, saving some people at the same time, with help from Omari Hardwick (“Bronzeville (TV)”, “Spell”), Ana de la Reguera (“Ana (TV)”, “Goliath (TV)”) and Tig Notaro (“Star Trek: Discovery (TV)”, “Transparent (TV)”).
Naturally, the government rewards him with a medal, so fast forward a bit and enter Bly Tanaka, Hiroyuki Sanada (“Avengers: Endgame”, “Westworld (TV)”), the owner of a casino in Vegas who has millions and millions of dollars in said safe that the insurance company has already paid him for.
He tells Bautista he can have $50 million of it, to share out with whoever he wants, if he goes and gets it. From a zombie infested Vegas.
Bautista rounds up his old friends and gains some new ones: Ella Purnell (“Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children”, “Kick-Ass 2”), his daughter, Nora Arnezeder (“Safe House”, “The Words”), a woman who sneaks people into Vegas for cash, Matthias Schweighofer (“Resistance”, “You Are Wanted (TV)”), a German safe-cracker and Raul Castillo (“Wrath Of The Man”, “Little Fish”), a Youtuber.
They all head in to grab the money, change their lives, and be set for life. Of course, it’s not like that. The zombies aren’t just wondering dummies who want to eat, I mean, some of them are, but there’s also a bunch who display intelligence, there’s even a leader, and he has a queen.
Zack Snyder (“Justice League”, “300”) wrote and directed the movie. It has an excellent use of music, some nice quips and a great amount of good CGI.
However, there are some pretty things that could easily be considered plot holes too, and naturally this may contain some spoilers from this point forward.
For instance, why didn’t Mr Tanaka simply give them the code for the safe if it was his? I mean, that would have saved them a lot of trouble. I guess, you could look at it as he wasn’t really that interested in them getting out, so maybe that one is covered off.
So, why then, when the obvious bad guy kills the queen zombie and removes her head, didn’t they bury the body? Sure, she’d screamed, but it wasn’t until king zombie came and found the body that he got really pissed. Bury it, give yourself some time.
Then we get to the end. Naturally, this is setup for a sequel, though I believe it’s going to be turned into a series instead. So, one of the group escapes, but he’s been bitten. Fair enough. Except, he emerges from his underground bunker a little after a nuclear bomb has just exploded. I’m pretty sure the radiation would have killed him before he’d got out of the city limits.
Finally, let’s not forget that we have seen this all before quite recently with the not sequel, sequel Peninsula, which saw a group of people heading into a zombie infested area for money…
Anyway, none of this matters really as it isn’t that sort of film. It’s a switch your brain off, enjoy the affects and the wonderful Dave Bautista and co, maybe think it’s going on too long but it’s enjoyable enough.
21st May 2021
THE QUICK SELL
Following a zombie outbreak in Las Vegas, a group of mercenaries take the ultimate gamble, venturing into the quarantine zone to pull off the greatest heist ever attempted.