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WORLD WAR PG-13

 Can we find a better compromise with respect to curbing the “destruction porn” in movies nowadays while still delivering the graphic violence and gooey gore expected in a bloody ZOMBIE movie?
 
I saw World War Z on opening night and thought it was a solid and tense pandemic thriller along the lines of Contagion and Outbreak, but as a straight-up zombie flick it fails utterly and unforgivably on the promise inherent in its very genre: it skimps on the goods.

That’s right, zombies…

I get the reasoning behind why a big studio prefers a PG-13-rated movie. If theater ticket-takers are performing their jobs diligently, teenagers cannot get in to see an R-rated movie without an accompanying adult, and a “PG-13” can equate to tens of millions more global box office dollars than a comparable “R” would earn.

Plus, the kids are going to want to see it….

Blood, guts and viscera typically means “Rated R for graphic violence.” It’s much easier for an expensive movie like World War Z to turn a profit if gaggles of teens don’t need adult chaperones to buy tickets, but why spend $200 million on a zombie apocalypse movie if you’re not going to show any gore?

If gore does show up, I’m ready…

I mean there’s none, nada, zip—it’s all implied with editing and sound effects, with the violence occurring just outside the edge of the frame.

It’s all cleverly staged and directed, perhaps, but hardly enough to quench fan-boy bloodlust. There’s nary a drop of plasma in sight, let alone the requisite jugular chomping or tugs-of-war with entrails we’ve all come to expect in—I reiterate—a ZOMBIE MOVIE.

No zombies yet, but lots of people moving….

I’ve seen some astonishingly good gore on cable TV’s The Walking Dead.  Granted, the artificial mechanical sheen of that show’s computer animation effects don’t approach the visceral impact of the squishy, syrupy, organic makeup effects in classic splatter-fests like Dawn of the Dead and Dead Alive!

World War Zzzzzzz

Still, even with its CGI aesthetic, the gore on The Walking Dead goes far beyond what the filmmakers of World War Z could ever hope to get away with in a PG-13-rated “event” movie. Apparently they knew this and opted to go completely the other way by skirting the issue entirely. It’s like they filmed a musical but didn’t bother to do any of the songs.

“Does anyone know where there DVD section is?  I’m looking for a Zombie movie”

The complete lack of graphic violence in World War Z isn’t just disappointing, it’s cruel.

It’s cruel because it’s a tease: the filmmakers promised me zombie apocalypse, and my understanding of zombie apocalypses is that they are always extremely revolting and most definitely rated “R” for rampant gore.

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