I hate the idea of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. The novel is an abomination. It’s an affront to literature. Pride and Prejudice is one of my favorite novels of all time and I hate the idea of some parody, modern interpretation mucking it up. HOWEVER. I went to see the movie adaptation, and while it is still the most ridiculous premise, it was pretty awesome and may have turned me around a bit. JUST A BIT.
I am in no way saying this was a good movie. It wasn’t. The pacing was uneven. I felt like it galloped through all the little intricacies present in the novel. It never felt wholly cohesive. But, to put it on the Flop House Podcast scale of measurement, it was a good bad movie and I had fun watching it. The first scene where zombies attack and all the Bennet sisters whip out swords and knives from under their dresses may have made me squeal a little. The mashup of badass ladies with the delicacy of the period was oddly compelling. It was a very empowering film. The women did 90% of the saving and much ass kicking. And the fight choreography was pretty cool. It was also hilarious to see the ways they integrated zombies into what is essentially a love story. It was very strange. It was both the Jane Austen story and an action/horror flick. It shouldn’t have worked, but somehow it managed.
The casting wasn’t terrible either. The actors who played Elizabeth and Darcy had nice chemistry. Though I was a bit put off by Darcy at first. He has an almost Byronic thing going for him and this low, raspy voice, but it grew on me. My favorite scene, and this may be a spoiler so if you would like to remain unspoiled AVERT YOUR EYES, was Darcy’s first proposal. It had the dialogue of the original Austen text, but they worked in a fight scene and it was quite nice. I won’t lie. Funny and ridiculous, but nice. The other Bennet sisters were pretty forgettable except for Jane. Wickham was appropriately smarmy and slimy, and Bingley was entirely too attractive. Lady Catherine de Bourgh was reworked as not only Darcy’s aunt but the fiercest warrior in England, which was neat. Also Matt Smith played Mr. Collins and it was AMAZING. He played him very silly and it worked well.
Adaptations are strange and people, myself included, have a tendency to get very upset about how they are handled. I try to treat any adaptation of a work as a new thing in and of itself. The medium has a tendency to change things; even the best of adaptations have to be worked to fit the medium. Sometimes it works well, others less so. But the adaptation in no way tarnishes the original work. So this zombie thing can stand. Is it ridiculous? Yes. Absolutely. But it serves its own purpose. It’s just another way to take in Austen and that can’t be a bad thing.
Until next time!