Zombie comedies are not easy to make. Edgar Wright did a great job with ‘Shaun of the Dead.’ Since then, we have been hard-pressed to find something that can compete. This subgenre of fusing comedy with zombies is a new one and we can forgive a few misses. However, even when keeping an open mind, it is hard to enjoy a lot of them. ‘The Dead Don’t Die’ is not for everyone but it tries to do a better job that most zombie movies we have seen recently.
The movie starts with a world off its axis, literally, due to some polar fracking. The axis thing is not the only apocalyptic thing that is happening here as the dead have awoken from their slumber. The small town we focus on has a police force comprised of Bill Murray, Adam Driver and Chloe Sevigny, some townsfolk who include Steve Buscemi and Danny Glover and there’s the rest of the world.
Jim Jarmusch wrote and directed this. He is the last person we would have expected to try a movie in this subgenre. The movie has a very ‘Night of the Living Dead’ feel to it. There is a lot of deadpan humor, which makes this film unique from its counterparts. This is a zombie comedy which favors the humorous side more than the scary one. There are even several scenes focusing on the characters and the impending doom with not a single undead in sight.
This is good but we felt cheated that the movie did not feel as fast and funny as the trailers that we saw. ‘The Dead Don’t Die’ has a very well-known cast which makes it hard to have everyone in the same room. The story gets fractured a bit by all this star power but it works in the end.
The presence of so many big names in the cast of this movie leaves you feeling like they are all game for whatever is thrown at them. The movie does not try to match some expectations that the audience might have. Anyone can die at any time and not all the implied plots are resolved. This might confuse some and leave others irked.
But despair not because there is a lot of meta-humor for the audience members who like to be tickled right in their brains.
Confusion and moments where you will be upset are bound to be there with a package like this but, you should probably walk into the movie with no expectations. You will enjoy it better that way.
If you want to enjoy this movie, you will just have to take it as it comes. Do not carry any expectations with you and do not think that it will do anything the way you thought it would. Let the movie unfold minute by minute for the best experience. This is not a perfect movie. However, it is not a mess either. If you are a fan of the genre, the tribute it pays to George A. Romero will be hard to miss.