"Pride and Prejudice and Zombies": an Action or Comedy Movie?
Zombie Action Flick or Pride and Prejudice Spoof?
Many audiences have been hesitant to watch Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. based on the very conflicted opinions of critics and those who went to see it. The confusion lies squarely in the question: is this a zombie action flick or a Pride and Prejudice spoof? My personal take is that it is kind of somewhere in the middle.
Now, I am a big fan of Jane Austen's written works. Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility and Mansfield Park are my favorites of her novels. That being said I am not a Jane Austen purist when it comes to the film or television adaptions. Jane Austen's books are all long and it would be difficult to get every tiny detail the same onscreen and still retain a sense of entertainment enough to capture the audience.
I have liked most of the film and television adaptions I've seen. Sense and Sensibility starring Emma Thompson and Kate Winslet is my favorite movie adaption of Austen's work. Everything about it is enjoyable to me. The music, the scenery, the acting, the costuming and even the script, although they changed Colonel Brandon to be a bit more attractive than how he was written in the original novel. Even in the novel though he seemed far more good hearted a person than that cad Willoughby.
I didn't actually read the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies book yet. I saw it at my local Barnes and Noble on numerous occasions, yet I never took the time to read it. When I saw the movie coming out I was interested in reading the book before. The time alluded me, but I still bought the movie once it came out on Blu ray and DVD. I watched it over a the course of a few days. During the course of those days I found myself enjoying the movie and the questions about what the movie is categorized as had me confused.
The straight truth is this movie is both a zombie action flick and a Jane Austen spoof. It is not a hardcore zombie flick by any means. The confusion of film goers may also be that the humor is not in your face. It is very straight-faced humor that a person would need to at least have seen or read the original Pride and Prejudice to really "get it".
The entire character of Darcy in this movie made me laugh. In the original book his character has a very deep sense of moral right and wrong and seems stoic and snobbish to the point he intimidates many people, even those of wealth. In this he retains the same level of intidimidation and snobbery, but it is based not only on his wealth. It is based on his aggressive and angry attitude to the zombie situation. In the book there wasn't an exact clear moment of when Darcy fell for Elizabeth. I'm still not sure why he precisely liked her, except that she was pretty, read quite a bit and was well-spoken. In this movie he clearly falls for her when he realizes she Is as psychotic a zombie killer as he is, only her skills are far more refined due to her marital arts training in China. This is also spoofing the book, because Darcy claims to desire a woman who is refined in every subject he deems important to be a lady of worthiness. In this Darcy obviously thinks a lady who can kick zombie butt is of great "refinement". The ending of Darcy's letter to Elizabeth also made me gasp with laughter at the contrast of it.
Elizabeth Bennet in the movie is tough and doesn't have much interest in marriage because she is more concerned with the zombie situation. Instead of just verbally sparring with people, Lizzie kung fu battles people while verbally sparring with her sisters, Lady Catherine and Mr. Darcy. Most humorously is her spar with Darcy, because they showed clear sexual tension between each other. The original book never shows something like that. They don't kiss or really say anything vulgar in the scene they just look each other over like they are totally into each other but are angry and repulsed by the other person in their dialogue.
The rest of the suppoting characters were funny to me as well in the spoof. The favorite sister, Jane, is still shy and beautiful. Yet in this she is also very strong and as good a zombie fighter as Lizzie is although she isn't as aggressive. When she fights she still looks like a pretty angel, which seemed deliberate on the part of the director. The father of the Bennett sisters hilariously says that he has no real interest in marrying off his daughters and that his more pressing concern is that they just surivive the zombie situation.
The zombie scenes are more played out as humorous, so for any hardcore zombie movie fan this isn't the movie for you. It's simply in part Pride and Prejudice only intercut with funny and slightly creepy zombie scenes.
Amazon Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Movie
Who is Pride and Prejudice and Zombies for?
It's mainly for anyone familiar at least partly to Jane Austen's work. And it is for people who like more funny zombie movies than just messy and gory ones.
Similar movies include the likes of The Brothers Grimm, Pirates of the Caribbean, Warm Bodies, Van Helsing, Sleepy Hollow, Corpse Bride and -of course- Pride and Prejudice. Only with Zombies. If you like any of these movies why not give Pride and Prejudice and Zombies a chance? It's a crazy, weird, Regency and zombie romp that seemed fairly entertaining and amusing to me personally. Likely it would amuse others as well. I give it three and three quarters stars out of five. It wasn't the best movie I've seen, yet it was well worth a watch for some laughs and creepy zombie characters walking around refined regency era dressed people.