I don’t watch movies with a group most of the time. This was an exception as it was selected for our Film Club’s Valentine’s Day film and it was stated, either serious or half-joking at one meeting, to bring a date. The weather was below zero, so it helped to be with other warm bodies for the screening I attended.
A zombie, R, falls in love with a human, Julie; Romeo and Juliet references notwithstanding.
I missed the theatrical run but had heard nothing but good word of mouth. I can see why. It’s all about R’s perspective. We are given access to his thoughts as he provides exposition as well as his feelings toward Julie, all with a bit of humor.
R’s attempts to express his feelings struck a chord with me. I have no idea how to act in certain situations that others have had experience in, like romantic relationships. The social awkwardness displayed was like I was looking at my reflection (allegorical, of course). His journey to become more human or in touch with reality was what this movie is about.
For a romantic comedy (there’s romance and actual comedy), it kept close to the formula of boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy reunites with girl. There’s even rain when the split-up happens, one scene where I laughed at the what was probably the wrong moment. I didn’t care because others laughed then as we knew the formula and some of the tropes associated with the romantic comedy genre.
The oppressive father, needless to say, isn’t all that strong of a character. Yes, he may be in charge of protecting the living from the undead and has minimal emotional contact with his daughter but that carries over in the resolution as R becomes human. He just accepts the situation at hand for what it is and decides to change with no real motivation. Granted, the father is just a secondary character but even then there should be some dimension and an arc.
I’ve heard that the director is open for a sequel, though there is no need as the story is complete. The walls of Jericho, like in It Happened One Night, come falling down at the end as R and Julie look on. End of story.
It’s a nice film to watch with others, especially around Valentine’s Day. It is a hand-holding film, like the poster suggests, perfect for a nice evening inside if the weather is freezing.