|Cast overview, first billed only:|
Plot – A teenage girl in the Midwest becomes infected by an outbreak of a disease that slowly turns the infected into cannibalistic zombies. During her transformation, her loving father stays by her side.
Review- An Arnold Schwarzenegger zombie film, in the middle of summer, means only one thing- it’s popcorn time! Right?
Wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong.
Did I say wrong?
Whilst it’s true that Maggie is set towards the tail end of a zombie apocalypse, all the action scenes would fit comfortably in say… a 2 minute 8 second trailer. That’s not to say that there isn’t action is this film, (this is a zombie film after all) it’s just the action is mostly matter of fact and happens of screen. This isn’t Resident Arnold is what i’m trying to say.
What this is, is a very well directed, shot, and acted character drama about a father who’s daughter is slowly turning into a zombie and how he faces up to the realization that he has to either kill her, or let the government take her into ‘quarantine’, but trying desperately to lake her last few days as human as pleasant as possible.
Although this film is only 89 minutes, it is very slowly paced and at times does feel stretched, the camera at times seems slightly out of focus and the actors do mumble their lines at times. And when you can hear the dialogue, it’s not exactly inspiring, original stuff. Most of it seems more like exposition than actual dialogue.
Also, the zombie virus effects, seems to get better or worse depending on the plots demands and the way it’s transmitted doesn’t make sense. Whilst Maggie is infected by a bite, other characters, kiss cuddle and hold her which in other films would transform them into zombies immediately.
On the plus side, the film is mostly beautifully shot, with some incredible images. the soundtrack is mournful for the life that Maggie will never get to have but incredibly tense when needs be. The setting seems intimate, about life trying to go on as normal when the dead walk. First time director Henry Hobson manages to get an incredible performance out of Arnie, as a devoted father loosing the person he cares most for in the world.
Abigail Breslin as Maggie though is another matter. She’s so morose and lifeless, that I was half convinced that she became a zombie before the cameras started rolling, and, if there was ever a role that required a rage against the dying of the light, it was this one.
All in all though, this was a wonderful examination of life in a zombie apocalypse and I strongly recommend it.
Rating- SEE IT