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Going crazy for THE CRAZIES!!!

I caught an early screening of The Crazies last night and was not expecting too much. I figured that even if the movie sucked, I didn't have to pay a cent to see it, so in that sense, it couldn't fail. So when the screen faded to black, I smiled because it turned out to be a win-win situation; it was a free and good movie.

Now, apparently the movie is a remake of a classic by horror legend, George A. Romero. I've never seen or knew that the film existed so I didn't have that same baggage going in. But I'm a horror hound so I guess I'm biased as far as that goes.

The movie takes place in a small farm town called Ogden located in Iowa state. We follow the sheriff as he tries to unravel three deaths that have occurred in their humble community. All the deaths were marked with intrigue as the killers were found in a zombie-like, semi-conscious, passive state. The sheriff and his deputy discover that a plane had crashed into one of the nearby lakes which serves as a source of drinking water to the town. The plane had been carrying some sort of biological weapon, eventually trickling into the local residents. It's not long before the government in and the sheriff and his wife find themselves on the run.

There were a lot of technical things that I liked about the movie. Firstly, I liked the way the movie was shot, making the small town of Ogden and its surrounding landscape look so rich on screen. I loved the wide shots of the fields that really conveyed how hopeless the characters seemed to feel. On top of that, I thought the post-rock style of the score by Mark Isham really fit with the cinematography. The two worked well together in creating this barren atmosphere and putting you in the middle of it. The action and gore had a really rugged and raw edge to it, which made you cringe anytime our heroes got hurt. Also, the suspense in some of the scenes made the movie quite gripping... always a positive.

Although the infected people seem to have been zombie-like beings, it's not clearly defined whether they were indeed zombies. They're referred to as "the crazies", "the sick" and "infected" so I guess that's all that really matters. The approach to the story is unique. At the end, I realized that we only saw maybe three or four deaths incurred by "the crazies" yet we saw hundreds of deaths caused by the humans. So really, who are the real "crazies"? The infected or the drone like humans? I love stuff like this that make you think especially from horror flicks.

Timothy Olyphant did a pretty good job as the sheriff, but to me, the standout character was the deputy officer who basically played the role of us, the viewer. While the sheriff was more a typical alpha-male horror hero, the deputy was more rational in his decisions and thinking. Heck, he even saves the sheriff a number of times. So who's the real hero?

The movie was not without its flaws though. There was one glaring plothole that related to one of the sequences near the end so I won't spoil it. But if you do decide to watch this just think about how it was possible for certain characters to get where they got. That's all I'll say about that. I also thought that they could have done more during the third quarter of the movie, when our heroes were on the run from the government.

I also thought that there were too many of those cheap-jump scares type moments in the movie. It just didn't seem to fit with the style of shooting that the movie was going for. The theater was packed pretty much to a full house and every time a jump scare occurred, hardly anyone reacted to it, so they clearly didn't work. I can understand the use of it in teen horror or slasher flicks, but this was a horror movie with somewhat of a class. You don't need that low grade shit.

The Crazies was quite an enjoyable movie. It was good but not great. At the time of publishing, the movie is receiving 74% on Rottentomatoes.com (29 positive reviews out of 39), so I guess it worked for the real critics out there. It's worth to check out if you're a horror fan and if you're not, it couldn't hurt either. Til next time, later geeks!

Comments

Beka said…
I'm pretty sure this is the movie I didn't want Keith to see.
So shhhh.
Don't tell him to see it.
Beka said…
Never mind! It wasn't this one.
I'd actually might watch this.

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