Director: Marc Forster
Writers: Matthew Michael Carnahan (screenplay), Drew Goddard (screenplay)
Stars: Brad Pitt, Mireille Enos, Daniella Kertesz
Not sure if the “Z” means the last World War or if it stands for zombie. Either way, there’s a worldwide outbreak of undead and Brad Pitt is dispatched by the UN to solve the crisis. The plot is standard formula (there’s even a kid with asthma) and dotted with leaps of logic. The frantic fervor of the zombies is the only cool special effect. Throughout his worldwide quest, the action never loses momentum and borders on gripping.
GAY ANGLE: None of Brad’s body, but he’s playing family man.
Much Ado About Nothing
Director: Joss Whedon
Writers: William Shakespeare (play), Joss Whedon (screenplay)
Stars: Amy Acker, Alexis Denisof, Fran Kranz
Joss Whedon is best known as writer/director of “The Avengers,” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Firefly,” so this departure into Shakespeare is atypical. It was shot in 12 days at his own house using his cast member friends (not movie stars). He’s given the romantic comedy a more somber tone, shot it in classic B&W and injected some musical interludes (which he also wrote). The performances are all strong with Nathan Fillion adding in a delightful turn as Dogberry. If you enjoy the Bard, this contemporary restaging is attractive, well-crafted and entertaining.