Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Screen 7 articles

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

2016

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies Poster
  • What will [the book's] innumerable readers think of this long-delayed movie adaptation, which has gone through so many iterations (at highest profile it was to star Natalie Portman and be directed by David O. Russell) that it now resembles something of a reanimated corpse itself? Lumbering, lifeless and — strange thing to say about a cadaver — almost entirely charmless.

  • Tired is a useful way to describe how you’ll feel while watchingPride and Prejudice and Zombies. Lovely Lily James and Sam Riley are forced to spit out an excessive amount of dialogue, which, thanks to the breakneck pacing of the film, gives Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy’s love-hate romance the feeling of one of those commercials where two people talk at each other as quickly as possible about cell phone plans.

  • A bloated mess that deservedly tanked at the box office. Based on the best-selling mashup by Seth Grahame-Smith, who grafted zombies onto Jane Austen's classic novel, the movie strives to be both scary and funny but winds up being neither. There's never a sense of fear or peril; everyone is too chirpy, including the damned.

  • Pride and Prejudice and Zombies reverts to being the unredeemed awful concept of Austen's peanut butter getting in George Romero's chocolate. Combining a classic novel of manners with a subgenre rooted in modern political metaphor feasts on the brains of both hosts, reducing Pride and Prejudice to a glib assortment of bullet points and losing the editorial relevancy that has always distinguished zombie pictures from other monster movies.

  • It doesn’t help that Mr. Steers, as his occasional leering peeks up Elizabeth’s skirts underscore, clings to some old-fashioned ideas about women and their on-screen uses. The larger problem, though, is that each moment spent on this movie is another spent away from Austen’s novel.

  • The juxtaposition of courtship and violence is the film's one true coup, butPride and Prejudice and Zombies still mistakes weaponry for agency. The realm of the zombie battles and the realm of the marriage contract are never paired in a way that provides any meaningful insight into why exactly this particular trope has invaded a story rooted primarily in gender imbalance.

  • Sight & Sound: Tim Hayes
    March 04, 2016 | April 2016 Issue (p. 89)

    Burr Steers makes the best of it by deploying the devices available on screen but denied on the page: reaction shots, some 15-certificate jumps and droll underplaying by a game cast... The second half then crashes in a heap of predictably bigger business. Steers shovels on extra baggage about the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, while contradictory zombie lore is invented off the cuff.

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