'Warm Bodies' Review: Leave Your Brain at Home, For Obvious Reasons

Nicholas Hoult in ‘Warm Bodies’/Image © Summit Entertainment
Nicholas Hoult in ‘Warm Bodies’/Image © Summit Entertainment

Last night I made it to a screening of "Warm Bodies," based on the book by Isaac Marion. Unlike my companion, I was not actively offended by the repurposing of a historically valuable subversive horror sub-genre into a mainstream-friendly romantic comedy. However, when it was revealed that the tenderhearted zombie "R" (Nicholas Hoult) collects vinyl records because they "sound more alive," I went cold and dead inside -- and not in a way that is likely to do much for my love life. If one was feeling uncharitable, one might compare the script's manipulative grab for cultural relevance among the tween hipster set to the undead's rapacious hunger for human flesh. Fortunately the camera lingers over Hoult's perfectly disheveled cholera-chic cheekbones so often that you'll forget to care whether he's actually eating anyone's brains, let alone whether your own are being slurped out in the process.

Unsurprisingly, the AV Club's recurring feature devoted to YA novels has scant praise for 50 Cent's Playground. The ongoing series is called "YA Why?" which sounds like "yay?" when you say it out loud. I think that's the joke they're going for there? Either way it's kind of a silly name. Even so, they've covered a lot of interesting territory, from Lois Lowry to Veronica Roth.

If Mark Hamill returns as Luke Skywalker in the upcoming "Star Wars" thingamajig, it would set a world record for the longest time between portrayals of the same character. I was about to note that they'd forgotten Christopher Lee, who appeared in both 1973's "The Wicker Man" and 2010's "The Wicker Tree," but I did a little research and found that there's some dispute between Lee himself and writer/director Robin Hardy over whether these roles are actually the same character. So, Hamill may keep the (dubious) honor for now!

I know you're all burned out on Batman for the time being, but would you feel better about the possibility of a reboot if Darren Aronofsky was in charge? I'm basically on board with this, but only as long as the movie's villains are the Black Swan and Randy "The Ram" Robinson. Otherwise, no deal.