Saturday, February 6, 2016

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is a strange mash-up

Movie Title:      Pride And Prejudice And Zombies

Grade:   B-

Rating:   PG-13, 1 hour 40 minutes

In a Nutshell:    Why?  I guess writer and director Burr Steers thought “why not?”

Who exactly is the target market for this film: fans of Jane Austin or “The Walking Dead”?  Is there a third category of people who love both?  If so, this movie is their dream come true.

It’s an odd mash-up, for sure, kind of like Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter .   Like that movie, real history is mingled with fiction in flirty fashion.  In the beginning of the movie, we are given a quasi-history lesson which tries to make the rest of the movie make sense.  

We’ve seen many different kinds of zombies in movies and TV shows before, and this movie brings us another version: one that can talk, run fast, and act human…with a British accent.

Uplifting theme: 
  •  “My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.” – Elizabeth
  • “Keep your swords as sharp as your wits.” – narrator
  • True love always wins the day.

Things I liked:
  • Matt Smith plays a delightful Mr. Collins, who has some of the best lines in the movie.  He is a hilarious dancer too.
  • I adore Lily James.  I first fell in love with her in Cinderella (2015) (Theatrical) . She is a lovely Elizabeth Bennet.
  • There is a scene where Elizabeth Bennet catches flies with her fingers as they fly by.  I actually knew a man who could do that.  It was fascinating to watch.
  • There’s a funny proposal scene involving punches and a wrestling match.
  • SPOILER ALERT:  The zombies gather in St. Lazarus church, which is an appropriate name if you’ve read the Bible.  In fact, there is quite a bit of mention of the Book of Revelations and the Anti-Christ with the attempt to make the story appear more credible.
  • I first noticed the delightful Sally Phillips on the British comedy “Miranda”.  She is an equally enjoyable Mrs. Bennet.
  • Did you know that Natalie Portman is one of the producers?
  • Jack Huston is the perfect Mr. Wickham, as well as the most changed Jane Austin character.  Did you know that he comes from Hollywood royalty on his father’s side of the family (his grandfather was the famous John Huston) and British aristocracy on his mother’s side of the family?  He is currently working on his starring role as Ben Hur in the remake to be released later this year.
  • Who doesn’t like proper ladies with swords and pistols?
  • One of the tidbits of information we’re given in the history lesson at the beginning includes something true that I only learned last summer when I visited London: there actually was a wall that surrounded the city of London.  Here are a few pictures of London I took on my recent trip there.

Things I didn’t like:
  • Men will like watching a cat fight.
  • It’s just odd…
  • Zombie lovers will be disappointed that there is more Jane Austin than zombie action.
  • Jane Austin fans will keep asking “why?”

Funny lines:
  • “I was unaware that zombies possessed such acuity so as to set such traps.  Before we know it, they’ll be running for Parliament.” – Mr. Collins (Matt Smith)
  • “Daughters do not dance well with masticated brains.” – Mr. Bennet
  • “Lady, may I take a moment to compliment you on your pantaloons.  Function or fashion?” – Mrs. Bennet
“Function.” – Lady Catherine
  • “Flattery will get you everywhere, Miss Bennet.” – Mr. Collins
  • “You have a very small estate here.” – The cocky Lady Catherine  (Lena Headey)
“And yet we endure it.” – Elizabeth
  • “May I inquire as to the measure of this discomfort?” – Giardana
“I would much rather show you.” – Elizabeth, getting ready to punch her
  • “Mr. Darcy, you’re as unfeeling as the undead.” – Elizabeth 

Interesting lines:
  • “Anything is preferred than to be married without affection.” – Elizabeth
  • “I’d risk a cold before I’d risk Darcy’s blade.” – Elizabeth
  • “My daughters were trained for battle, not the kitchen.” – Mr. Bennet (Charles Dance)
  • “Of all the weapons in the world, I now know love to be the most powerful.” –
  • “I shall never relinquish my sword for a ring. – Elizabeth
“For the right man, you will.” – Jane Bennet
“The right man wouldn’t ask me to.” – Elizabeth
  • “Their hubris will be their downfall.” – captain guy
  • “I don’t know which I admire more, Miss Bennet: your skill as a warrior or your resolve as a woman.” – Lady Catherine

Tips for parents:   

  • You will hear wonderful types of profanity like “Oh fuddle!” and “Bugger!”
  • Homosexual innuendo.
  • There’s not as much blood and gore as there is in “The Walking Dead”, but there is still plenty of shootings, stabbings, smashed skulls, and other forms of violence.
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