Friday, March 01, 2013

Warm bodies

I haven’t seen Warm Bodies yet. I’ll wait for the DVD. I’ve seen the trailers, and I’ve read some reviews.

A couple of reviews mention a baptismal motif, where R is reborn through immersion in water. I doubt that’s a deliberate allusion to the Christian sacrament, but it may be a cultural relic, where even post-Christian writers and directors subconsciously still operate within remnants of a Christian framework.

Also, to judge by reviews, Warm Bodies has a surprisingly traditional view of male/female role relations. R’s residual humanity is almost gone. He’s forgotten his past. Forgotten who he is. Because he can’t remember, he collects memorabilia. He’s still human enough to be aware of how much he’s lost. In his amnesia, he seeks personal identity in fragments of the past. Mementos of a lost world, before the zombie apocalypse.

When he sees Julie endangered, his masculine instincts kick in. He saves her from harm. Becomes her physical protector or bodyguard.

And she returns the favor by saving him in a characteristically feminine way, by giving him a woman to hope for, long for, and live for. In her company, his submerged humanity begins to surface. She draws him out of his zombie shell.

So they save each other, in different ways–one stereotypically masculine, the other stereotypically feminine. Her romantic presence inspires him to tap into his nearly extinguished humanity. To rediscover his manhood. His humanity. His individuality.

Although it’s not a Christian film, it imitates the plot contours of a theological metanarrative: fall, regeneration, eschatological restoration. At least, that’s my cursory impression.

No comments:

Post a Comment