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‘World War Z’ Book Vs Movie: Why Book Fans Should Give the Movie a Chance

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Last week I shared the trailer for World War Z starring Brad Pitt.  I knew that the movie was based on a best selling book of the same title written in 2006 by Author Max Brooks. and I’m not a book reader, but I decided I should read a few pages of the book and see what I thought.   I read the book in 1 day, I couldn’t put it down.  Amazing book.  Immediately I joined the ranks of book fans that were outraged at what they saw in the trailer.  It doesn’t follow the book!  After some cool down time, and a clear head, I haven’t given up hope yet.  Neither should other book fans.  Here’s why:

1.  Hard to tell a complex story in flashbacks.     Film’s approach may work better for film.

What makes the book so easy to read is that it’s a compilation of accounts from across the globe.  No one story gets drawn out,  but for a movie that can really be tough.  It just doesn’t work the same on screen as it does in a book.  Writers re-wrote the story into a one man Terry (Brad Pitt) saving the world.  Yes, it’s a typical Hollywood film, but that doesn’t mean it necessarily will be bad.

2.  So what if it has running zombies?  There are some athletic zombies in the book.

Lots of comments on the web are as follows:  “Running zombies!  Zombies can’t run?  Why are you ruining this Hollywood?”  Traditionally, zombies can’t run.  While reading World War Z, I did get the feeling that these zombies were much more agile than other zombies in classic book.  The whole idea of it starting as African Rabies speaks to this.  Zombies were quick and violent in the beginning of the book.  Also there was a reference to zombies being able to climb on top of each other to get over walls.  (Can’t remember the exact part, but they were thankful the ground was soft enough they couldn’t get a foothold.)

3.  From what we can see in the trailer, in takes place globally.

Israel was a big part of the book, and how they self quarantined.  Looks like a lot of mid east action going on in the book.  That’s important that the film is going to at least cover what happens across the globe, and they made a big enough point of it to include half of the trailer being in other countries.

4.  We saw a nuclear flash.

Another part of the book, where a small nuclear exchange takes place in the middle east.  Notice when you see them looking off to the left in the plane, you see a mushroom cloud.  It’s a 1:59 in the trailer.

5.  The book created the world/scene, the movie can now play in it.

Max Brooks beautifully wrote a complex world and realistic view of what would happen if the unrealistic zombie outbreak occurred.  It’s very complicated how countries would react, tensions would rise, etc.   It’s certainly too much to get into even a 3 hour movie.  There’s even talk about this becoming a trilogy if it does well.  So from Hollywood’s standpoint it has to grab a mass audience’s attention from the start.  If this goes well, I’m sure there will be sequels with more elements from the book.

Let’s not pass judgement too early.  I’m being optimistic.  I absolutely love the book and I’m excited to see the movie.  And if you think it’s because I’m a Brad Pitt fan, it’s not.  I actually don’t like very many movie’s he’s in.  But, I’m willing to have an open mind and give this film a shot.

I’ll also be the first person to rip it apart if it disappoints me.

Check the trailer again:

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