WORLD WAR Z (Forster, 2013) and le cinématographe

From July 2013:

World War Z is just a well-made movie. And that’s no small thing. A tidy script that hits all the beats and ties things up in a satisfying way, and Marc Forster deserves credit for understanding that, at the stylistic level, zombie flicks trade on spatial relations–on trajectories of and obstacles that impede movement (here, this is thematized: “movement is life”), on foreboding expanses and anxious corners with creatures possibly lurking around them, on moving the viewer from wider to tighter ranges as a scene intensifies and on decisions about what to reveal inside the frame and what to leave outside it. On the latter point, Forster makes some nice choices especially when Pitt’s character uses alcohol on the Israeli soldier’s open wound. We see nothing of the severed limb; it’s all in the art of suggestion through what you don’t see and sound cues. And sound too is thematized here; the movie prompts you to use your ears. Pure cinématographe, as Bresson would say.

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