Netflix and Zack Snyder's take on the zombie story is definitely interesting. Army of the Dead is certainly not a basic zombie movie. Snyder is mainly known at the moment for making DC movies and having rather passionate fans, so it's intriguing to see his take on the somewhat classic tale of people vs. zombies. Netflix might have been counting on said passionate fans to make Army of the Dead a hit for the streaming service, and it certainly has a lot of potential. Snyder not only directed the film but also wrote the story and co-wrote the screenplay. The movie was initially announced in 2007, but it remained stuck at Warner Bros. before Netflix bought the rights in 2019. Now that it's finally released, Snyder's passionate fan base, lovers of the zombie story, and more can see it.
Even those who are not usually into the genre might enjoy it. The story mainly follows Scott Ward (Dave Bautista), who Bly Tanaka (Hiroyuki Sanada) hires to break into a zombie-infested Las Vegas. He must bring with him a team, including a safecracker named Ludwig Dieter (Matthias Schweighöfer) to unlock a safe beneath a casino and a pilot named Marianne Peters (Tig Notaro) to get him and his team out of there.
However, things don't go exactly as planned. Scott ends up also bringing his estranged daughter Kate (Ella Purnell) along. Kate hopes to find a friend of hers named Geeta (Huma Qureshi), who Lily (Nora Arnezeder) brought into the city of Las Vegas. Vanderohe (Omari Hardwick), Maria Cruz (Ana de la Reguera), Mikey Guzman (Raùl Castillo), Chambers (Samantha Win), and Burt Cummings (Theo Rossi) make up the rest of the team.
Tanaka also forces them to bring his associate Martin (Garret Dillahunt) along. Most of the main characters are interesting and seem to have their own reasons for going on this journey. Only perhaps Burt Cummings and Martin are not very intriguing. The most compelling of them all, however, is Scott's daughter Kate. She is a volunteer at a camp outside of the city of Las Vegas. Her friend Geeta has two children, therefore they need her. Viewers also see, through flashbacks, some of Scott and Kate's stories. Don't worry, there are no spoilers here. Army of the Dead, however, also offers plenty of action as well as emotion. The story is partially a zombie movie and partially a heist movie. It's basically like Ocean's 11, except with a zombie twist.
The story is surprisingly fun, and that might be down to the heist element. As well as the camaraderie between the main characters. Every cast member has chemistry with every other one and the team becomes a sort of family while trying to pull off the heist. Throughout it all, Scott and Kate remain the heart of the story. Viewers might find themselves rooting for these characters, as unconventional heroes as they might be. From safecracker Dieter to pilot Peters to Lily who helps the team get into Las Vegas in the first place, most of these characters are worth rooting for. Scott and Kate have several heart-to-heart talks throughout the story. And by the end, one's heart breaks for them. They remain the emotional heart of the story, while still being part of the action.
The main characters, except for Scott and Kate, start out being in it for the money but eventually become protagonists who are easy to relate to. These characters may be sort of anti-heroes but they are certainly no less for that. There are surprisingly several heart-warming moments between members of the team. And of course, Scott and Kate are there, providing a ton of emotion.
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