‘Warm Bodies’: Did the Zom-Rom-Com Charm Critics?

It’s probably no easy task to create a coming-of-age film around a character who no longer ages. By virtue of being, you know, well, dead. But Warm Bodies offers up a romantic comedy about a zombie in love – a zom-rom-com, if you will – in which a beautiful, blonde-haired survivor played by Teresa Palmer stirs the passions of the undead Nicholas Hoult.

Is love all that anybody, alive or dead or somewhere in-between, ever truly needs?

This clever twist on the genre film is earning high marks from critics thusfar in a month that’s already proven financially successful for the horror genre. Hopefully this flick will see some living, breathing love at the box-office.

Tasha Robinson, AV Club

“On paper, much of this story was about the protagonist’s internal life, in a way that turned him into a colorfully realized version of an every-teen: awkward at expressing himself, occasionally horrified at the gap between his feelings and his actions, uncertain where each new development might lead, but excited by every new hint of hope and of escape from the dreary, mundane daily plod. Onscreen, it’s a mildly comedic but bluntly told story about how teen romance magically cures zombie infection.”

Jordan Hoffman, ScreenCrush

Warm Bodies is a supernatural teen love story with a brain. (Excuse me. . .BRAINS!) It is hardly a memorable film, and certainly a step back for director Jonathan Levine after the masterful 50/50, but it’s cute, and if you are a high schooler looking for a date flick or slightly older and chaperoning your niece you could do a hell of a lot worse.”

Michael Phillips, The Chicago Tribune

“We’re a long way from the manic, repulsive, jolly slapstick of Zombieland. This is more like a sensitively bent version of a Nicholas Sparks novel, where lovers must overcome significant social obstacles before moving on to the bed. At one point we hear R remind himself: ‘Don’t be creepy … don’t be creepy,’ as he tries to pass for human among actual humans. Hoult has a nice, sympathetic quality at such moments, though the whole of Warm Bodies, in both its comic and dramatic strains, lacks a certain…what? Ooomph? Intensity? Invention?”

Richard Roeper, Chicago Sun-Times

“This is a bloody fresh twist on the most popular horror genre of this century, with none-too-subtle echoes of a certain star-crossed romance that harks back to a certain bard who placed a certain young Romeo under a certain balcony. I kinda love this movie. Warm Bodies is a well-paced, nicely directed, post-apocalyptic love story with a terrific sense of humor and the, um, guts to be unabashedly romantic and unapologetically optimistic.”

Sheri Linden, Huffington Post

Warm Bodies, the latest permutation of the zombie screen phenomenon, places heart over horror and romantic teen angst over sharp social commentary. The low gore quotient and emphasis on young love might disappoint genre purists, but for those open to the idea of a gently goofy mash-up, the film is strong on atmosphere and offers likably low-key, if somewhat bland, charms. As a date movie for teens and twentysomethings that nods toward edgy fantasy while favoring down-to-earth mellowness, the Summit release is primed to hit the box-office sweet spot.”

Watch the trailer for Warm Bodies and then let us know — what did you think of the zom-rom-com?

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