A Scourge Far Worse Than Bad Manners Is Unleashed In Pride And Prejudice And Zombies
Gentle friends, is unchaperoned flirting from behind a cloud of carrion flies your idea of romance? Then might we humbly suggest to you a film title for your viewing enjoyment. Indeed, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies may be the perfect movie for all—from the Jane Austen-loving gentry to the hideous unwashed masses of horror fanatics. Ineligible for the current awards season as it is, please allow us this modest proposal: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is Hollywood’s opus.
For anyone who’s lamented the recycling and rebooting the movie industry leans heavily on, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies proves that there was a method to all this avoidance-of-original-ideas madness. Austen’s story is over two centuries old and has been adapted for the screen more than a dozen times but not in a single instance did anyone think to invite hordes of brain-eating undead to liven up all those tea parties.
Enter: Seth Grahame-Smith, the writer who read Pride and Prejudice and thought (like many of us), “Huh, this beloved book about 19th century manners is a bit of a snooze.” But where our ideas on the subject ended, Grahame-Smith’s were just beginning. “What if there were zombies”? he (probably) asked—and director Burr Steers (Igby Goes Down) agreed.
Classic Elizabeth Bennet lines like “There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others,” take on a whole new meaning when the speaker’s courage is being tested not by a snooty socialite attempting to humiliate her, but by a fellow highly trained killer with whom she has cause to quarrel.
With a cast whose collective CVs include starring roles on Game of Thrones, Doctor Who, and Downton Abbey (this is still Austen’s story after all), the movie aims to draw in a wide audience—and it’s definitely capable of impressing one. The highlight is former Who star Matt Smith. As the marriage-minded and utterly tone-deaf Parson Collins, Smith hands in a comedic performance that is on par with some of his best moments as the Eleventh Doctor.
Appreciate historically accurate period costumes? Detest bad manners? Think the French were responsible for The Black Death? Check. Check. Check. How about needing to see a head explode from the POV of said exploding head? Or just wishing that there were more strong female role models in film. Consider that covered too.
If there’s at least half an uneaten brain inside your skull, you’ll be at the theatre February 5 when Pride and Prejudice and Zombies hits the screen. Watch the trailer below: