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December 6, 2023

Warm Bodies delivers in time for Valentine’s

By Florence Lau | February 14, 2013

It is no secret that the Warm Bodies are creating their own take on Shakespeare’s classic and tragic love story, Romeo and Juliet.

After all, the two romantic leads are named R and Julie, and Julie’s father as well as their life circumstances conspire to keep them apart.

Luckily, R and Julie’s love story turns out much happier than did their 16th century counterparts.

This movie follows the story of a zombie named R (Nicholas Hoult), who is different from his fellow undead. He wants more from life than traveling in hordes and feasting on the brains of survivors. He runs into a survivor named Julie (Teresa Palmer), and after eating her boyfriend’s brain, falls in love with her and decides to try and keep her safe rather than eat her. R brings Julie back to his hideout for a few days and tries to show her that he isn’t out to harm her.

Eventually, Julie begins  to trust R and they strike up an unlikely friendship. Their friendship and eventual romance spark something in the rest of the zombies, who begin to somehow cure themselves. As R and Julie’s romance heats up, they must find a way to convince Julie’s father, the head of the only remaining human colony, that the zombies are becoming more human again.

This is the perfect movie for Valentine’s Day. It’s funny, cute, and smart, and it is a light-hearted hour and a half for those who want to see a happy version of a zombie apocolypse (which is pretty rare as far as the zombie genre goes).

Hoult plays a zombie who doesn’t want to be a zombie to perfection as he drags himself around the airport terminal that is R’s home. His struggles to connect with Julie and show that he means no harm is adorable and makes the audience temporarily forget that he is technically undead as they just want to give him a huge hug.

Julie is a blend of strong and vulnerable at the same time, which sounds like a contradition, but somehow works when she’s on the big screen. She’s the kind of girl who won’t back down and will fight this apocolypse till her last breath. Palmer is able to embody Julie’s contrasting nature. She’s able to show Julie’s strength from the moment we first see her on screen until the very end of the movie.

The supporting cast contributes no less to the film’s overall success. Ranging from funny to tragic, their individual stories add to this world that the audience is introduced to and flesh out the details outside of R and Julie’s love story.

The exact science of the cure is never explained — no one really knows how a zombie-human romance could lead to a cure for all zombies. This lose end made audiences wonder as they left the movie theatre, and it was probably the weakest point in a very strong film. However, no one came to this movie for the science, so it does not detract too much from the viewing experience.

Some people have compared Warm Bodies to Twilight because both movies involve a dead creature falling in love with a human. However, that is where the similarities end. Although Warm Bodies starts out in a hopeless world, it does not stay that way, and the movie shows that hope can be found even when it does not seem like it. This film is quirky, fast-paced and makes the audience feel good, which is in direct opposition to the pervasive gloomy feel of the Twilight series. Another big difference is the main female lead. Julie is full of life and willing to fight for what she wants while Bella is passive and waits for things to happen to her. There are other differences that make Warm Bodies stand out on its own, but no matter how one spins it  these are two very different movies despite their similar premises.

Warm Bodies is a romantic comedy-action movie that is not to be missed. Although it is a very different love story than what audiences usually see, it is no less endearing, and it will leave you smiling and understanding how love could cure zombies.

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