Directed By: Zack Snyder
Starring: Dave Bautista, Ella Purnell, Omari Hardwick, Ana de la Reguera, Theo Rossi, Matthias Schweighöfer, Nora Arnezeder, Hiroyuki Sanada, Tig Notaro, Raúl Castillo, Huma Qureshi, and Garret Dillahunt,
Synopsis: After a zombie outbreak in Las Vegas, a group of mercenaries takes the ultimate gamble by venturing into the quarantine zone for the greatest heist ever.
Review: Zack Snyder returns to the zombie genre with a bang! He delivers us the zombie-heist movie of the year, Army of the Dead (2021).
Netflix teamed up with Snyder to produce this highly anticipated epic — a project right up Snyder’s street, as the award-wining director who gave us Watchmen, 300, and Dawn Of The Dead. His Warner Brothers productions, Batman V Superman, and Justice League, had less-than perfect reviews — but obviously Netflix know better his unique talent in the industry!
Snyder has always had the power to grab an audience’s attention within the opening chapter; this is no different. The Army of the Dead opening is as badass as it can get; an army expedition encounters a bump on the road, and with intense scenes, we see the initiation of the apocalypse unfold. We watch the fall of Las Vegas in a quirky montage, with our main muscle-man, Dave Bautista, and his team, saving asses and battling hordes of the undead.
A few years later, Bautista is offered $50 million to re-enter the quarantined, zombie-filled Vegas on a mission. Bautista rounds up his former teammates: Maria Cruz who would follow him to hell and back if she could; Vanderohe, a chainsaw-wielding killing machine that could make Leatherface think twice; the droll helicopter pilot, Marianne Peters; comical German safebreaker, Ludwig Dieter; Mexican sharpshooter, Mikey Guzman, and his lethal associate, Chambers. Chambers has a hugely gripping fight scene that fans of the John Wick shooting-style will appreciate!
Army of the Dead is exceptionally violent and gory, immediately and throughout! One thing that this movie doesn’t skimp on is the blood bath — we get some pretty gruesome moments. A major movie highlight is the zombie tiger, Valentine, ripping someone to shreds: the special effects are flawless, including the scenes where Tig Notaro (Marianne Peters) is digitally added in.
Snyder brings a few new adaptions to the zombie world: the Alpha Zombies are tougher, faster and can control hordes; and when zombies have nothing to eat, they lie dormant… until they are disturbed, that is.
The finale of Army of the Dead is a supreme highlight — the suspense runs high, from the nuclear weaponry countdown, to the character life-or-death grappling, as well as the revengeful hunting by the top Alpha Zombie.
Overall, Army of the Dead is the champion of zombie movies, with plenty of action and horror. Snyder has brought back the zombie genre; it is the big-budget zombie movie that fans have been waiting for. Dave Bautista is solidly stapling himself as a leading man in the action genre now!