Army of the Dead, beginner’s guide to Zack Snyder’s zombie world

Take this little guide as a preview. Thanks to Netflix, we got to preview Zack Snyder’s highly anticipated Army of the Dead, a heist-movie based on zombies and action written, directed, produced and photographed (for the first time). by the author of 300, Watchmen and Justice League. It is his comeback film: a new and complete feature film, already director’s cut – to dispel any doubts – coming to the online streaming service on May 21st. It is quite possibly the most talked-about and anticipated title of the moment, and for the director it doesn’t seem to be in any way a cinematic hit and run. The intention is to expand and branch out: There are already a spin-off animated series and a prequel film in the works, and in the many interviews released recently Snyder has always admitted that he will continue to explore his original vision on the undead. The reason is simple: the potential of the Army of the Dead narrative universe is enormous.

It was not an immediate or preventive choice, but an ongoing discovery during the drafting of the screenplay, written by Snyder in six hands, Joby Harold e Shay Hatten. Like the best Resident Evil, continuing along the forerunner trace of George Romero, however, reversed, the zombies in the author’s film take on an important and social role, unlike any other iteration of monsters you have ever seen, with their own specific nomenclature and an America adapted to this “infestation “. Before going into the analysis of the title in the appropriate review in a couple of days, today we want to tell you some details dedicated to the narrative universe of Army of the Dead. Nothing that contains big spoilers on the history or fate of the characters, so read on calmly.

Long live las vegas

The interesting thing about this great franchise project is that it is already born with specific narrative intentions in mind. In itself, Army of the Dead turns out to be the backbone of the whole bandwagon of genre but does not however give specific coordinates linked for example to the zombie epidemic and the past of the protagonists. It does not do this for the reasons listed above, namely the idea of ​​developing back and forth along the cinematic line of Zack Snyder’s pivotal film. In all of this, however, there are a couple of elements that we can anticipate in the form of a guide to the background of the Snyderian undead universe, really the beginnings, just for a smattering of curiosity.
First of all, there is an Alpha, patient zero. It is not clear who he is, how he contracted this sort of virus (but we never talk about a virus) or how long it was kept hidden by the United States government. It doesn’t even have a name but Snyder and the writers do nicknamed Zeus, and you will discover the reason very simply by watching the film (and no, it does not throw any lightning bolts!). However, Alpha’s peculiarity is this: he is terribly, frighteningly, surprisingly human despite being a zombie. He is agile, he is intelligent and he even feels emotion, and apart from a badly exploited cue in War Bodies we assure you that you have never seen such an undead monster, more terrifying for its nature than for its appearance.

Either way, Zeus is the alpha and as such anyone who bites directly becomes a new alpha, which means a nimble, strong, fast, intelligent, “human” zombie. Only and only its bite can create new alpha, while all other zombies are called shamblers, like the enemies of The Last of Us. The latter are the zombie-typo: slow, hungry for human flesh, not very strong, not at all intelligent; they are also the overwhelming majority, because they directly convey the epidemic, which in any case the USA they manage to contain within the only Las Vegas, fully quarantined.

Before this, right in the streets and casinos of Sin City there was a war without quarter between humans and zombies, the same one that will then be told in the aforementioned prequel animated series, Army of the Dead: Lost Vegas. For the sake of completeness, the filming of the prequel film directed and starring Matthias Schweighofer has also already finished, Army of the Thieves, due out next year.

The virus is also transmissible from man to man but also between man and animal and finally from animal to animal, except for the birds, which apparently in the world conceived by Zack Snyder would be the only living beings immune to this catastrophe. The reason is not explained but in purely narrative terms the choice was made not to risk breaking the Las Vegas quarantine and easily spreading the disease all over the world, not being that the conceptual sense of the film.

Don’t expect to see zombie dogs in Army of the Dead though: those will appear by direct promise of Snyder in the animated series, while in this feature film the heart of the franchise we will see the already adored tiger Valentine and also another zombified animal, although we will not tell you which one.
In closing, after Sucker Punch, Army of the Dead is the second completely original work and no remake or adaptation written and directed by Zack Snyder. For his great comeback behind the camera and on the set, the author of Man of Steel has returned to look at the beginning of his career and one of his first horror loves, even treasuring the great pain that resulted from the loss. of his daughter and thinking of something that is obviously derivative, but in its own unique and curious way, a mixture of genres that wants to attract the general public into a truly surprising universe of possibilities. But the film will be successful or not? Have all these ideas and enthusiasm hit the mark and hit the mark? We will reveal our opinion on May 20, so stay tuned to

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