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(Science Blogs)   Scientists point out the many scientific shortcomings of World War Z. Long story short, turns out the movie wasn't a goddamn documentary   (scienceblogs.com) divider line 61
    More: Obvious, Netflix, biology  
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1617 clicks; posted to Geek » on 24 Jun 2014 at 2:30 PM (35 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-06-24 12:53:10 PM  
loved the book, read it after seeing the movie
rewatched the movie after reading the book

other than there are zombies, and we get little bits of stories from all over the place, pretty much no connection between the movie and the book

the book could easily have been a 3 part movie or 10 part miniseries
battle of yonkers, the bridge in eastern europe, the fighting back and retaking america, the zombie herds walking on the bottle of the ocean ...
these would have made some fantastic episodes ...

too bad they went with movie = more money option
 
2014-06-24 01:42:27 PM  
Documentary?  Shiat, the movie wasn't even based on the book they took the name from!
 
2014-06-24 02:11:49 PM  
But fast zombies are so much more entertaining.
 
2014-06-24 02:15:29 PM  
They lost me the minute the gridlocked Philadelphia traffic magically disappeared when the zombies arrived -- except for the gassed-up RV with the keys and weapons abandoned in Center City.
 
2014-06-24 02:31:56 PM  
purplejesus.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-06-24 02:36:28 PM  

InterruptingQuirk: But fast zombies are so much more entertaining.


One of the things that really annoys me about the otherwise rather excellent 28 Days Later is how fast the Rage Virus works.  It's like the incubation period is 10 seconds.
 
2014-06-24 02:42:02 PM  
Yes, but the book presents itself as trying to be scientifically semi-accurate/plausible-

And then, if I remember right, claims stuff like air attacks and artillery don't work well on zombise, since it just blows them into pieces/doesn't destroy the brain (While.. neglecting what, say, pressure waves would do to said zombie brains)
 
2014-06-24 02:44:04 PM  
I didn't read the article, but "suspension of disbelief" isn't license to just completely throw all science and common sense out the window and do whatever you want. You either have to keep your in-world "science" within viewing distance of plausibility or you have to go so far beyond it that you intentionally cross into absurdity and embrace it as a core piece of your work.

When you strive for even a semi-serious tone, though, you can't just do whatever you want. If a movie goer sees something that's TOO far out there, it breaks their concentration because they know better and their brain objects to what's on screen by throwing up a stop sign and reviewing the facts. For example, the Star Trek remake was so whack-a-doo out there it just annoyed me after awhile (certain episodes of the shows, particularly TNG episodes where they'd just use magic radiation to fix something, were the same way).

That said, World War Z didn't do that to me, although (spoiler) the zombies having a magical ability to sense weakness came pretty close.
 
2014-06-24 02:45:57 PM  

namatad: the book could easily have been a 3 part movie or 10 part miniseries


what i would like to see is a miniseries with a full up documentary format. there's the documentarian, interviews, 'footage', 'found footage', charts, etc. have the first episode or two be about the initial spread and response, then a bunch of episodes with each one focusing on a specific story, and another 2-3 episodes with various conclusions/mini stories.

done right (as in, straight and sober), it could be farking horrifying

InterruptingQuirk: But fast zombies are so much more entertaining.


fast zombies make more sense in terms of like...internal consistency. super rabies is far more 'plausible' for a sudden-onset world collapse than slow walkers with a few days incubation
 
2014-06-24 02:47:39 PM  

Felgraf: Yes, but the book presents itself as trying to be scientifically semi-accurate/plausible-

And then, if I remember right, claims stuff like air attacks and artillery don't work well on zombise, since it just blows them into pieces/doesn't destroy the brain (While.. neglecting what, say, pressure waves would do to said zombie brains)


So de-limbifying torsos is completely useless?  Because avoiding Matt is virtually impossible?
 
2014-06-24 02:51:47 PM  

Felgraf: Yes, but the book presents itself as trying to be scientifically semi-accurate/plausible-

And then, if I remember right, claims stuff like air attacks and artillery don't work well on zombise, since it just blows them into pieces/doesn't destroy the brain (While.. neglecting what, say, pressure waves would do to said zombie brains)


That's the problem with pretty much all zombie movies/tv shows. If a scrappy bunch of misfits with scavenged weapons manage to survive then a battalion of Rangers should be able to mop up the whole thing in a couple of weeks.
 
2014-06-24 02:52:53 PM  

phalamir: Felgraf: Yes, but the book presents itself as trying to be scientifically semi-accurate/plausible-

And then, if I remember right, claims stuff like air attacks and artillery don't work well on zombise, since it just blows them into pieces/doesn't destroy the brain (While.. neglecting what, say, pressure waves would do to said zombie brains)

So de-limbifying torsos is completely useless?  Because avoiding Matt is virtually impossible?


..and Bob in the ocean, Russell in the forest....
 
2014-06-24 02:55:27 PM  
That C-130 was an amazing piece of gear.  It was able to launch from a carrier deck and fly all the way to Korea apparently without refueling.  Later, when they need to fly from Korea to Isreal, they again manage to take off without any type of refueling.  Later, an untrained pilot is able to take off with it from a landing field in Tel-Aviv and fly away again, without fuel.
 
2014-06-24 03:00:56 PM  

socodog: That C-130 was an amazing piece of gear.  It was able to launch from a carrier deck and fly all the way to Korea apparently without refueling.  Later, when they need to fly from Korea to Isreal, they again manage to take off without any type of refueling.  Later, an untrained pilot is able to take off with it from a landing field in Tel-Aviv and fly away again, without fuel.


Actually, C-130 carrier landings and takeoffs have been done:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BjNyQvhsQE8

Refueling?  Well, that's a different matter.  Assume it happens off screen, like reloading of guns.
 
2014-06-24 03:03:27 PM  
The worst think about World War Z on Netflix, the VERY worst thing is that they have two versions: The theatrical release, and a longer unrated version.

The worst thing comes from that the title search, using Wii, only shows one of them, so then you watch that.  At the end you are offered other movies to see  (full disclosure, I started the movie on Wii, finshed on a PC, Wii doesn't offer suggestions.) , including the unrated version, and then you wonder, did you just waste 1.5 hours because if you want to see the new parts, you have to watch the regular parts again too.

Grrrrr

/I peeked at the opening scenes and the ending scenes, and didn't see anything different
 
2014-06-24 03:08:12 PM  

Vlad_the_Inaner: /I peeked at the opening scenes and the ending scenes, and didn't see anything different


I've been inspired to google to see if the analysis has been done.  It has.   6 more minutes.  Woo

Doesn't look like I missed much

http://www.movie-censorship.com/report.php?ID=594947
 
GBB
2014-06-24 03:08:22 PM  

socodog: That C-130 was an amazing piece of gear.  It was able to launch from a carrier deck and fly all the way to Korea apparently without refueling.  Later, when they need to fly from Korea to Isreal, they again manage to take off without any type of refueling.  Later, an untrained pilot is able to take off with it from a landing field in Tel-Aviv and fly away again, without fuel.


And not once did anyone in that movie use the bathroom.  What do they expect from us; to believe that these characters can live without food, drink, or the elimination of bodily waste???  I mean, come on!!
 
2014-06-24 03:12:01 PM  

Felgraf: Yes, but the book presents itself as trying to be scientifically semi-accurate/plausible-

And then, if I remember right, claims stuff like air attacks and artillery don't work well on zombise, since it just blows them into pieces/doesn't destroy the brain (While.. neglecting what, say, pressure waves would do to said zombie brains)


hey, the book was fantastic. I have never been that creeped out reading a book. I had to leave the lights on in house.
The matter of fact storytelling / reporting was quite well done.

sure pressure waves ...
but ordinary shrapnel type weapons would require a lucky hit to take out the brain ....
and maybe the pressure wave might take out the brains near by ....

but in the end, they brought the wrong weapons to fight 2-5 million zombies ....
shudder
 
2014-06-24 03:14:22 PM  
I have no problem with fast zombies, but the instant infection is really frustrating.  The UN Undersecretary makes the offhanded remark that the airlines made the perfect delivery system for the zombies, which makes no sense since no one could get infected and then board a plane undetected in a pre-collapse world.  If there was a days to weeks long incubation period and an illicit trade of infected organs as in the book then that's a reasonable statement.
 
2014-06-24 03:18:03 PM  

socodog: That C-130 was an amazing piece of gear.  It was able to launch from a carrier deck and fly all the way to Korea apparently without refueling.  Later, when they need to fly from Korea to Isreal, they again manage to take off without any type of refueling.  Later, an untrained pilot is able to take off with it from a landing field in Tel-Aviv and fly away again, without fuel.


And magically morph into an Antonov An-12.
 
2014-06-24 03:19:59 PM  

Stile4aly: The UN Undersecretary makes the offhanded remark that the airlines made the perfect delivery system for the zombies, which makes no sense since no one could get infected and then board a plane undetected in a pre-collapse world.


they made some offhand remark about how in like 2% of the population it takes a few days to kill/reanimate
 
2014-06-24 03:21:40 PM  

sprawl15: fast zombies make more sense in terms of like...internal consistency. super rabies is far more 'plausible' for a sudden-onset world collapse than slow walkers with a few days incubation


I think you and Dittybopper are confusing what I mean by fast. I'm merely referring to the classic taxonomical zombie branches of how fast they move, like on their legs and stuff.
 
2014-06-24 03:22:18 PM  

Edward Rooney Dean of Students: socodog: That C-130 was an amazing piece of gear.  It was able to launch from a carrier deck and fly all the way to Korea apparently without refueling.  Later, when they need to fly from Korea to Isreal, they again manage to take off without any type of refueling.  Later, an untrained pilot is able to take off with it from a landing field in Tel-Aviv and fly away again, without fuel.

And magically morph into an Antonov An-12.


I'm pretty sure that's what it was supposed to be the whole movie.
 
2014-06-24 03:23:22 PM  

Stile4aly: I have no problem with fast zombies, but the instant infection is really frustrating.  The UN Undersecretary makes the offhanded remark that the airlines made the perfect delivery system for the zombies, which makes no sense since no one could get infected and then board a plane undetected in a pre-collapse world.  If there was a days to weeks long incubation period and an illicit trade of infected organs as in the book then that's a reasonable statement.


The movie aswers that though.  Each and every 747 plane had a zombie stored below deck. I am still not sure how the zombie got on the plane in the movie.
 
2014-06-24 03:23:43 PM  

Stile4aly: I have no problem with fast zombies, but the instant infection is really frustrating.  The UN Undersecretary makes the offhanded remark that the airlines made the perfect delivery system for the zombies, which makes no sense since no one could get infected and then board a plane undetected in a pre-collapse world.  If there was a days to weeks long incubation period and an illicit trade of infected organs as in the book then that's a reasonable statement.


With a 12 second to turn time and fast zombies everyone would have died. There'd be no movie.
 
2014-06-24 03:27:55 PM  

InterruptingQuirk: I think you and Dittybopper are confusing what I mean by fast. I'm merely referring to the classic taxonomical zombie branches of how fast they move, like on their legs and stuff.


no, that is also what i mean

take the standard zombie trope of an infected at a hospital. it rezzes and bites a nurse and a few doctors. then it's beaten to death. then we wait a while and those nurses/doctors go under in a day+. who then maybe bite a few people before being killed themselves, etc. you're looking at weeks to infect a significant amount of people, which isn't really internally consistent with the "you wake up and suddenly the world is shiat" trope

the combination of fast movement speed and fast infection time makes it spread far faster and far more violently, letting a single airplane landing in a city cause a chain reaction that wipes the city out within hours. far more prone to entertainment and internally consistent
 
2014-06-24 03:28:52 PM  

InterruptingQuirk: But fast zombies are so much more entertaining.


They made it work - the "zombies as ant swarm" idea is different enough to be interesting, but the movie was so disjoint it was hard to like.  The first part was good up until they left Korea for Israel - where nothing was learned, just more action.  Then Wales where everything was solved with more luck than effort.

It seemed the secondary characters and epilogue (Russians fighting hand to hand) sounded way cooler than Brad Pitt's Zombie Travel Show.  The "drama" of his family being shipped off felt tacked on and hard to care about when every other character had it worse, plus they were just removed from the story until the end where we find out...they were fine all along.  Like an investigator couldn't care about the end of the world unless his family were put in danger.

It could have been cooler, but instead it was made a generic action vehicle for Big Name Moviestar.
 
2014-06-24 03:35:43 PM  

sprawl15: the combination of fast movement speed and fast infection time makes it spread far faster and far more violently, letting a single airplane landing in a city cause a chain reaction that wipes the city out within hours.


Which is what makes it entertaining. Some of us just want to watch the world burn.
 
2014-06-24 03:43:47 PM  

dittybopper: socodog: That C-130 was an amazing piece of gear.  It was able to launch from a carrier deck and fly all the way to Korea apparently without refueling.  Later, when they need to fly from Korea to Isreal, they again manage to take off without any type of refueling.  Later, an untrained pilot is able to take off with it from a landing field in Tel-Aviv and fly away again, without fuel.

Actually, C-130 carrier landings and takeoffs have been done:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BjNyQvhsQE8

Refueling?  Well, that's a different matter.  Assume it happens off screen, like reloading of guns.


Maybe its because I only watched the unrated one, but I'm guessing everyone didn't see the sequence of reloading the plane in Korea?


Also, I was expecting the magic bullet to be alcohol.  The first guy ignored was a drunk bum, the second one was an old guy who might've been hitting the wine, and he was practically force-feeding the Israeli soldier booze...
 
2014-06-24 03:45:16 PM  

emocomputerjock: Stile4aly: I have no problem with fast zombies, but the instant infection is really frustrating.  The UN Undersecretary makes the offhanded remark that the airlines made the perfect delivery system for the zombies, which makes no sense since no one could get infected and then board a plane undetected in a pre-collapse world.  If there was a days to weeks long incubation period and an illicit trade of infected organs as in the book then that's a reasonable statement.

With a 12 second to turn time and fast zombies everyone would have died. There'd be no movie.


Actually, I think the chain of transmission would break pretty quickly.  Patient Zero starts biting those around him, and then they start biting everyone around them, but it's all in close physical proximity.  Once the word gets out to run away, the zombies run out of people to bite in the immediate vicinity.
 
2014-06-24 03:49:05 PM  
RatMaster999:

Also, I was expecting the magic bullet to be alcohol.  The first guy ignored was a drunk bum, the second one was an old guy who might've been hitting the wine, and he was practically force-feeding the Israeli soldier booze...

Same here since the folks not munched on my zombies seemed to be out of it (except the kid).  Or something like the Andromeda Strain where the virus can't stand certain pH levels.

Having the finale be a bunch of drunk soldiers fighting zombies would have been great though.
 
2014-06-24 03:49:36 PM  

InterruptingQuirk: sprawl15: fast zombies make more sense in terms of like...internal consistency. super rabies is far more 'plausible' for a sudden-onset world collapse than slow walkers with a few days incubation

I think you and Dittybopper are confusing what I mean by fast. I'm merely referring to the classic taxonomical zombie branches of how fast they move, like on their legs and stuff.


Sorry I didn't make that clear.  I was commenting on a movie that had fast zombies, in terms of being able to haul zombified ass as you mean it, but I was complaining not about that part, but the part where the infection is almost completely instantaneous.
 
2014-06-24 03:51:51 PM  
bad science aside, it was still a terrible movie.
 
2014-06-24 03:52:50 PM  
There is absolutely nothing scary about zombies.

You know what's scary?  Intelligent rational human beings who have something to gain by hurting you.

We already know how to handle animal-like intelligences just fine, no matter how hungry and infectious.
 
2014-06-24 03:58:44 PM  
I like in the book how they showed the spread of it from China, India to the middle east and from there Africa ,Europe and the rest of the world. In the movie it was just "suprise zombies here!! nom nom nom"
 
2014-06-24 04:05:01 PM  
I loved the book and my only problem with the movie was that it will prevent someone from making a good movie out of it.   I love a good zombie movie.

Unfortunately, WWZ wasn't even a good zombie movie.  It sucked in it's own right.
 
2014-06-24 04:05:46 PM  

dittybopper: InterruptingQuirk: But fast zombies are so much more entertaining.

One of the things that really annoys me about the otherwise rather excellent 28 Days Later is how fast the Rage Virus works.  It's like the incubation period is 10 seconds.


I liked the fact that the "zombies" weren't dead, and, in theory, if you waited long enough the regular physical processes that govern everything else in the universewould do in the zombie same as you or me.

I agree that the 10 second thing was very unrealistic (especially given the attempt to make it reasonable overall), but they were probably just trying to tell the story in a 2 hour setting, as opposed to having to wait days and days for the disease to transform it's host.

/a non-supernatural zombie outbreak in a densely populated area like Hong Kong is bad news
//a non-supernatural zombie outbreak in the US should be a quick affair... I guess one more argument for gun-rights?
 
2014-06-24 04:05:47 PM  

Rent Party: I loved the book and my only problem with the movie was that it will prevent someone from making a good movie out of it.   I love a good zombie movie.

Unfortunately, WWZ wasn't even a good zombie movie.  It sucked in it's own right.


I dunno. It had Peter Farking Capaldi in it. That's a good watch anyday for me.
 
2014-06-24 04:06:37 PM  

InterruptingQuirk: Which is what makes it entertaining.


why do you think i was disagreeing with that
 
2014-06-24 04:07:12 PM  
I totally don't buy the whole "dead people coming to life" thing. I mean, what idiot think's that is a real possibility? C'mon at least be realistic! Can't they just be a bunch of pissed off Mormons or something???
 
2014-06-24 04:07:16 PM  
How did the zombie get on the airplane in Israel? I'm assuming climbed up the landing gear, but I thought those areas were sealed.
 
2014-06-24 04:17:52 PM  

commisioner: How did the zombie get on the airplane in Israel? I'm assuming climbed up the landing gear, but I thought those areas were sealed.


Because zombies have always been an analogue to minorities, representing racial fears.  And you can't keep them away forever.

//it was purposeful in night of the living dead
 
2014-06-24 04:33:33 PM  

ikanreed: commisioner: How did the zombie get on the airplane in Israel? I'm assuming climbed up the landing gear, but I thought those areas were sealed.

Because zombies have always been an analogue to minorities, representing racial fears.  And you can't keep them away forever.

//it was purposeful in night of the living dead


I think you're giving the movie far too much credit for that level of thought.
 
2014-06-24 04:45:50 PM  

commisioner: I think you're giving the movie far too much credit for that level of thought.


It seemed appropriate given the whole Israel/plane/terrorism/minority relationship.
 
2014-06-24 04:46:58 PM  

dittybopper: InterruptingQuirk: But fast zombies are so much more entertaining.

One of the things that really annoys me about the otherwise rather excellent 28 Days Later is how fast the Rage Virus works.  It's like the incubation period is 10 seconds.


Seriously. There's no way it would have possibly spread internationally the way it did. Time from infection to frank, unmistakable symptoms was waaaay too short.

I couldn't let go of that. That virus would have completely burned out within a few miles of its first appearance.
 
2014-06-24 04:58:18 PM  

ikanreed: commisioner: I think you're giving the movie far too much credit for that level of thought.

It seemed appropriate given the whole Israel/plane/terrorism/minority relationship.


Interesting. I never made the connection myself but you might be on to something. Stupid and ham-fisted attempt from the film-makers though.
 
2014-06-24 05:08:06 PM  

groppet: I like in the book how they showed the spread of it from China, India to the middle east and from there Africa ,Europe and the rest of the world. In the movie it was just "suprise zombies here!! nom nom nom"


Sort of. There was also organ transplants, that got its own chapter, that was like a time bomb: the liver of an infected person might take weeks to manifest, compared to a heart.

Overall, I thought the book was pretty clever.

The movie was a soft turd.  Pointless and mindless, like just about any Tom Cruise movie: sure, its fine, maybe, but really, after you leave the theater, it just lifts right out of your memories, and you just don't care anymore.

It *could* have been Game of Thrones for the zombie set... or a GOOD version of Walking Dead.
 
2014-06-24 05:20:46 PM  
Wouldn't insects and vermin basically take care of any zombie threat over time?
 
2014-06-24 05:25:35 PM  
I don't know, I liked it but I always want Pepsi after watching it and I have no idea why.
 
2014-06-24 05:52:38 PM  
The worst part of the movie was when the zombie virus didn't want to infect people who were sick. .... As if viruses have any intelligence or desire to propagate.  Viruses are not alive.  They are not conscious.   They propagate by pure happenstance.

And even if viruses WERE conscious, infecting a sick person still wouldn't be a bad thing.   That sick person could infect hundreds prior to the host body dying off.
 
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