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zombies

World War Z or How to miss the point when making a movie (SPOILERS)

wwzLet me begin by saying that I am both a reader and a film buff. Having read the wonderful book that Max Brooks produced has been a pleasure, and learning that it was being adapted to film blew my mind. Upon learning production was delayed piqued my curiosity all the more. I should have known better.

Let us begin with a synopsis of the book. Max is a reporter who interviews many of the heavy hitters in the post war on Zack. He learns of many people who had the will and courage to make difficult decisions when the chips were down and tells their story. The humor, logistics, and strategic foresight show that Mr. Brooks really did his homework. The book is a complete and undeniable triumph in the genre. Not only is it compelling, it also shows the ineffable spirit of the human condition to survive against all odds.

The movie follows a former military operative and his family, a whole new story in the WWZ universe. It begins in Philadelphia, the man and his family on a drive to the unreachable “grandmas house.” All hell breaks loose when our hero finds the 12 second count for the virus to spread from bite to complete infection. Later, his daughter has an asthma attack and the parents have no backup inhalers. They raid a grocery store, have a Mexican stand off with some dude behind the pharmacy counter. Once they leave, they find an apartment building where a nice latino family take them in. The latino family dies, save their little boy who is adopted by the hero and his family. Not a bad start, a little weak in the pathology department and the preparedness of a mindful father who is ex-military. Already we find holes in the compared plots. I was still hopeful.

The movie goes on, people die and dismembered fingers move. We then begin to see the Zack swarm move like a tidal wave… yes I know it is not literal… the imagery is striking. Then the emaciated Arab boy sits unharmed and unnoticed among the swarm. Foreshadowing!
Anyway, our hero then goes to a CDC or WHO or whatever building, where he is welcomed and finds the “cure” by injecting himself with Hepatitis. The whole idea is that Zack can tell if someone is “terminal” and is therefore uninterested and unable to turn the victim. Thus saving the human race by having a stronger viral infection than the Z virus.

What are the key differences? The the book, humanity made a mad dash toward survival by doing what we do best… surviving. We fight tooth and nail for survival and find ourselves nearly wiped out but in better shape than we began. It shows the human condition, it shows tenacity and strength. Nothing breaks us in the end and we go from being our own worst enemy to being our own strongest ally. Though altruistic, very well done and inspiring.

The movie shows us that though it takes a minute for blood to circulate the whole our bodies, the virus can replicate and destroy us in 12 seconds… 12 SECONDS?! The book made it about a day or so. It also shows us that humanity is doomed since the only way for us to fight Zack is by giving everyone in the world an STD… YAY! Who cares about the will to survive? Who cares about the hard fight in a world where only the terminal survive? Let’s not forget the wiggling finger on a charred corpse, yes it is for cinematic fun time, but it is not Return of the Living Dead… a finger cannot move it there is no tendon or sinew to attach itself to the bone.

All in all, the movie was fun to watch, but had little to nothing to do with the book and should have been a stand alone. Fun, exciting, and all around entertaining… but again… NOT WWZ! Not even close.

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Texting: How to appear more important than you are when nobody really cares

So you’re walking along, minding your merry little at some mall and it’s crowded. You glance to one side or another as you admire this or that little item when out of nowhere the teenybopper in front of you stops dead in their tracks. Your mind flashes *DANGER DANGER* as the mere feet close within moments and it takes all of your dexterity to narrowly avoid bowling over the pedestrian before you. As you duck and weave and barely keep yourself upright, you notice something. He or she is not even looking in front of them, no look of heart attack, shock, disturbia, fear, anxiety… just cold dead eyes glued to a hand held device and thumbs blazing. A mobile texter.

The true walking dead. A zombie, zed head, Z word, shambler, techno corpse, droids droid, an iDead. Their faces explain it all. Eyes glassy, mouth slightly agape as the endorphins race through their body and make their cold lifeless heart beat a little faster at the prospect of reply… should it be “OMG LOL” or perhaps “:P kill me now because I waste space and oxygen that is truly needed to keep the useful and competent alive?” It takes every ounce of control that I have not to rip their lifeline from their unfeeling fingers and hurl it down a long corridor.

If you are one of these people… shame! Are you so important that you have to force people around you to stop and move around you just because you suck at multitasking? Is it really that difficult to step to the side, away from the flow of traffic, and proceed to reply in whatever mindless dribble you feel is a failed attempt at the English language?

Yes, I text. Firstly, my job makes it a requirement. Secondly, I am a courteous and observant person who doesn’t enjoy running in to people or visa versa. I find that it makes my life easier to actually look around me from time to time, listen to the sounds all around me, and avoid any untoward confrontation. Personally, I find it prevents me from running headlong into some mouthbreather when I pay attention.

The last nail in this coffin is undoubtedly the most idiotic, Philistinial, and all around mindnumbingly ruhtarded concept I have ever encountered. Driving texters. For the love of Pete… WHY? <sarcasm>Well, I’m too important to get into an accident because the whole goddamned universe revolves around me and therefore nothing bad could possibly happen.</sarcasm> If I had my druthers I would take that damned phone of yours and shove it straight up your… anyway I digress. Get over yourselves and start paying attention!