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February 1st, 2013

Movie Review - Warm Bodies

Warm Bodies

Starring: Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer, Analeigh Tipton, Rob Corddry, Dave Franco, John Malkovich, Cory Hardrict, and more.

Directed by: Jonathan Levin Screenplay by: Jonathan Levin Novel by: Isaac Mario Cinematography by: Javier Aguirresarob Original Music by: Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders

Premise: A teenage zombie questions his lack of life and odd thoughts and habits as he moves through the confines of his existence now that he is no longer human. But his spark of oddity flares when, on a normal zombie raid for human flesh, he falls in love at first sight. Thus unknowingly setting off a slow chain reaction that might save him as well as others. (Rated PG-13)


1) Acting - Total Thumbs Up: Nicholas Hoult made for a truly adorable zombie. His facial expressions and long dead stares were great. His body movements were a little more limber here and there than one would expect from zombies, but this is a minor 'nit-pick'. Teresa Palmer as Juliet was incredibly believable in both her fear and lack of excitement for the emotionally barren area of what her father called 'home'. Rob Corddry added a lot to the film as R's best zombie friend M. The scene where he stares at the picture of the couple holding hands was very poignant.

2) Special Effects - Total Thumbs Up: The creatures that zombies turned into once they despaired of their unlife had great detail and were very creepy. The scene where the bonies land on top of the glass canopy and start pounding on it really brought home how far removed from the others they were. The scenes showing the zombiefied hearts coming back to life looked great.

3) Plot/Story - Thumbs Up: quot;Warm Bodies" is a darling idea, especially with the undertones of Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet." Zombies in most stories and films just 'are', with no real science to support their existence, so taking the extra step to believe they're not truly dead at that stage, won't be much of a mental reach for most viewers. Half the fun is watching the zombies evolving back to what they used to be.

Several themes run throughout the film -- that not all (emotional) zombies are undead, and that people need to connect with others to feel alive. I loved the use of eating brains as a means for the undead to steal memories and feelings from their victims so that they could feel momentarily alive themselves, and how it was used in the telling of the story.

The film felt a little slow in spots, but only a few, and not for long. There were plenty of fun, amusing moments throughout.

4) Stunts - Thumbs Up: There was gun play in several sections of the film. Juliet's side slide and shotgun use, won't be forgotten by the guys anytime soon. "Warm Bodies" also had some decent hand to zombie combat. The zombies versus bonies scene, where the zombies are played by people and the bonies by CGI, probably took a lot of work to synchronize.

5) Locations/Cinematography - Thumbs Up: There were several skyline shots, a few made more impressive by the addition of the wall the humans erected over a large part of the city to keep the zombies and bonies out. The use of the airport as a main zombie hangout was very apt, for incorporating a few of the themes and the wide variety of locations all in one place.

6) Costuming/Makeup - Total Thumbs Up: The department did some really nice work on the zombies. Between the changes to the skin, virus made tracks on the body, and the eyes, they made for a huge contrast as R changed over time. The changes were even more telling on M and a few of the others. The scene where we see R's scars from previous human encounters looked great.

Conclusion: ombies, tragedy, and romance - an odd mix, but one that was surprisingly cute and satisfying. As hubby pointed out, "Warm Bodies" is the perfect date movie - a mixture of genres that will give both guys and gals something to enjoy.

Rating: 4 out of 5 (Hubby's Rating: Worth Full Price of Admission)

Gloria Oliver
Unveiling the Fantastic



(2015) Fantasy

The King is Dead! Long Live the Undead King!

"What are you implying?"

The magister glided forward and scrunched down beside him.

"That in order to bathe, you must first actually get into the bath."


(2014) Urban Fantasy

It took everything from her, except revenge!

The muscles in my right arm jerked from tension as I tried to make it move and it resisted. A shrill scream inside my head insisted I didn't want to do this. That if I did, there'd be no way to take it back. "I...I'm afraid."


(2011) Young Adult – Fantasy

Which is worse…the monster without or within?


Home—family—the two things he would never have, the two things forever denied him…because of her.

Anger welled inside him, the heat of it suffusing him to the core, gurgling with seething emotions the total opposite of the coolness splashing down from the fountain nearby. Before he realized what he was doing, Jarrin stepped inside the gazebo.

(2007) Young Adult – Fantasy
“Harry Potter meets Dragon Riders of Pern”


“Do you need any help?” she asked. “Just tell me what you want me to do. If you prefer, I’m sure I can round up at least a few people to come over and give you a hand.”

Kel slowly shook his head. “It’s all right. Thanks anyway.” His voice lowered to where she almost couldn’t hear it. “This is all part of my punishment.’

She frowned, not understanding what he meant. “Punishment?”

Kel cocked his head in Clarence’s direction. In a flash, she understood. None of this was an accident. Clarence had landed there deliberately, hoping to make Kel pay for all he went through in the past month. She shook her head, not wanting to believe this, but what the dragon said next took any doubts right out of her head.

(2008) Young Adult – Fantasy
“To save the world she must DIE! Or must she?”


Panic and fear filled with utter helplessness made her dizzy. She knew what would be done with her, she knew what they planned. But there was nothing she could do to stop any of it.

Sharp gasps echoed in her ears as she felt the room’s cold air caress the Eye.

“You were right. She is the one.”

(2002) Adult/YA – Japanese Fantasy Adventure
“The Last Samurai meets Pirates of the Caribbean”


Laying the blade on the floor before him, Toshi parted his kimono until his stomach lay exposed. He tucked his sleeves beneath his legs to hold him upright if he should falter. Ignoring Asano, he took up the blade. His shoulder flared with pain and he tried not to flinch, as he grabbed the blade with both hands. He turned the wakizashi until its sharp point was aimed at his belly, the residence of his soul.

(2004) Adult/YA – Fantasy Mystery
“He tried to forget his past, but his past wouldn’t forget him”


Torren took a step back a sudden shudder racking through him. It was as if he’d never left, as if the boy he’d been would be coming back-though the one who’d loved this room and all these things was long, long dead. That boy died when he’d watched his father’s blood pour forth from his mouth, the end of a sword protruding from his abdomen. That boy died when he survived while everyone else lay dead.

Info, sample chapters, and free reads at www.gloriaoliver.com

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