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ENTERTAINMENT
February 20, 2009 | Philip Brandes; Charlotte Stoudt;
What better way to honor the endless headline revelations about financial industry bloodsuckers than with a revival of "Dracula"? Bram Stoker's 1897 tale of a parasitic, undead aristocrat draining the life from hapless middle-class victims has undergone countless plot transfusions over the decades. But it was Frank Langella's 1977 Broadway performance that put the final stake in the coffin of Stoker's original concept, re-envisioning the vampire count as a brooding romantic figure -- a whiter shade of Heathcliff, as it were.
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ENTERTAINMENT
February 13, 2014 | By Robert Abele
In Manuel Carballo's pre-apocalyptic zombie drama "The Returned" - set years after an outbreak has been medically contained - getting bitten is no walking-death sentence, as long as you get your timely zombie protein shots. Then you can still be a functioning - if often discriminated against, or outright hated - member of a still-fearful society. So why, then, is returned-advocate doctor Kate (Emily Hampshire) secretly hoarding doses for her loving, infected boyfriend Alex (Kris Holden-Ried)
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ENTERTAINMENT
October 2, 2009 | Michael Ordona
A zombie plague has transformed the world into a cannibalistic hellscape. Into a small Texas town steps a skinny, quivering nebbish with a shotgun: "I know it looks like zombies destroyed it, but that's just Garland," he tells us via nerdy narration. "I may be an unlikely survivor, with all my phobias and my irritable-bowel syndrome. . . . " But he has survived, in large part because of his adherence to such rules as "Double tap" (make sure that undead thing is really dead), "Don't be a hero" and "Beware of bathrooms."
ENTERTAINMENT
February 7, 2014 | By Gary Goldstein
Livelier and more amusing than its studio's advance-screening ban suggested, "Vampire Academy," based on the bestselling tween book series by Richelle Mead, should largely satisfy fans of the seemingly unkillable parade of hot-young-vampire tales. That said, this likable comedic-thriller is something of a narrative mishmash as the script by Daniel Waters ("Heathers") continually strains to explain - and then make good on - the dense ins and outs of Mead's secret society of good and bad vampires.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 19, 2010 | By Gina McIntyre, Los Angeles Times
In a nondescript office building on Cahuenga Boulevard, Frank Darabont is putting the finishing touches on the end of the world. The writer-director, famed for such Oscar-nominated feature films as "The Shawshank Redemption" and "The Green Mile," is now masterminding the zombie apocalypse with his new television series, "The Walking Dead. " Adapted from Robert Kirkman's graphic novels, "Walking Dead" follows a band of survivors struggling to retain their humanity in a nightmarish world overrun by the undead.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 26, 2013 | By Betsy Sharkey
For sheer summer escape, it's hard to beat a good zombie flick. Good, bad, always ugly, the undead are a highly amusing genre as a whole. "Zombieland" from 2009, with Jesse Eisenberg and Emma Stone riding shotgun and Woody Harrelson wielding one, remains my favorite. "Warm Bodies," a clever hipster twist on the old trope starring Nicholas Hoult and Teresa Palmer out earlier this year, comes close. But for now, consider indulging in the campy, eco-eccentric fun of Brad Pitt's battle with the undead, their teeth-chattering and bad hygiene giving "World War Z" its bite.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 28, 2010 | By Michael Ordoña, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
George A. Romero's zombie movies may no longer frighten, but the director always tries to provide something to chew on. In his new "Survival of the Dead," though, the metaphorical meat is one audiences may not care to digest. On an island off the Delaware coast where people speak with thick Irish brogues, an age-old conflict between clans rages despite the undead plague one would think should take precedence. Instead, they focus their animus on each other, essentially waiting for the zombies — which one side is trying to train to not eat humans — to get loose and, well, eat all the humans.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 7, 2011 | Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
The zombie movie has few storytelling avenues beyond attack-chomp-slaughter-run, and George Romero has by now explored them all, and memorably. What separates new entry "The Dead," then, is its physical arena: the harsh, withering expanse of northwest Africa. By setting their zombie-pocalypse in a war-torn region of unforgiving climate, punishing earth and decimated villages, British filmmaking brothers Howard J. and Jon Ford — who filmed in Burkina Faso and Ghana — get an initially visceral metaphoric punch not unconnected to the routinely troubling news media images often beamed from this ravaged continent.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 8, 2010
The festival of green screen that is "Bitch Slap" is surely intended to be a fond tribute to any number of hot-women-in-peril movies. Think Zack Snyder meets Roger Corman. Meets Christopher Nolan. Seriously. But when it offers only scant humor (and costumes) and interminable girl-fighting, isn't that actually just another entry in the genre? There is a plot, for those who look beyond the belles and whistling, but it has something to do with buried treasure and the CIA and other stuff like that, in a structure borrowed from "Memento," so the less said, the better.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 28, 1999 | SHAWN HUBLER
Though it will be 10 years on Monday since they shut down the old Los Angeles Herald Examiner, its big vertical sign still hangs, gathering soot, at Broadway and 11th Street. There's the same grimy loading dock, the same casbah dome on the rooftop. Inside, shafts of sun catch the dust motes as they float through the Julia Morgan-designed lobby, under the soaring arches and over the cheeky cherubs on the wall relief. The newsroom on a recent day was still all metal desks and dingy linoleum.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 31, 2013 | By Robert Abele
You don't call a movie "Cockneys vs. Zombies" because you yearn for cinematic subtlety. Matthias Hoene's feature film debut is the umpteenth infection in the undead epidemic rampaging through pop culture. And it's all that the title implies: brash East Enders gone Mum and Dad over a right goppin' bunch of flesh-eatin' nutters, whose Khybers need kickin', mind you! You don't need a cockney rhyming slang dictionary, however, to grasp that young bank robbers Andy (Harry Treadaway), Terry (Rasmus Hardiker)
ENTERTAINMENT
June 26, 2013 | By Betsy Sharkey
For sheer summer escape, it's hard to beat a good zombie flick. Good, bad, always ugly, the undead are a highly amusing genre as a whole. "Zombieland" from 2009, with Jesse Eisenberg and Emma Stone riding shotgun and Woody Harrelson wielding one, remains my favorite. "Warm Bodies," a clever hipster twist on the old trope starring Nicholas Hoult and Teresa Palmer out earlier this year, comes close. But for now, consider indulging in the campy, eco-eccentric fun of Brad Pitt's battle with the undead, their teeth-chattering and bad hygiene giving "World War Z" its bite.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 20, 2013 | By Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
Birds do it. Bees do it. Even educated fleas do it. And as it turns out, zombies do it as well. They swarm. And when they're done swarming, they swarm all over again. That unstoppably manic movement is the most unexpected part of "World War Z" as well as its most memorable. But while the rest of the film, directed by Marc Foster and featuring the irreplaceable charisma of Brad Pitt, is zombie business as usual, it's fun to see this kind of familiar material done with intelligence and skill.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 10, 2013 | By Ruben Vives
A Tennessee man accused of wrecking a stolen big-rig and causing a massive traffic jam on Interstate 15 in Temecula last weekend told authorities he was fleeing from zombies. Jerimiah Clyde Hartline, 19, has been booked on suspicion of grand theft, driving without a license and hit-and-run. He remains in custody at the Southwest County Detention Center in Murrieta on $500,000 bail.  According to California Highway Patrol Officer Nathan Baer, Hartline told authorities he stole the semitruck Saturday night from a weigh station in Rainbow, a community 10 miles southwest of Temecula, because he thought zombies were coming after him. Baer said Hartline believed zombies were holding onto side of the truck even as he tried to escape from the walking dead.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 31, 2013 | By Mark Olsen, Los Angeles Times
Zombies are people too. Or they were, before they became the flesh-craving, brain-eating undead. The new film "Warm Bodies," opening Friday, is an unlikely hybrid of horror film and young adult romantic comedy that transforms a zombie apocalypse into a last stand for feelings. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Isaac Marion, adapted for the screen and directed by Jonathan Levine. Set in a future where many people have inexplicably turned to zombies, the story opens with a zombie narrator (Nicholas Hoult)
ENTERTAINMENT
January 31, 2013 | By Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
Even with Hollywood's magic touch, zombies may never beat out those seductively stylish vampires for a Vanity Fair cover, but something about the unfashionable undead makes them ripe for irony in the right hands - so many possibilities lurk behind those blank stares. The right hands at the moment seem to belong to Jonathan Levine. The writer-director certainly has a good grip on what to do with those cold souls in "Warm Bodies," a surprisingly sentimental mash-up starring Nicholas Hoult, Teresa Palmer and John Malkovich.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 16, 2009 | Steve Appleford
The young men are barely awake, stumbling into a van outside their Albuquerque hotel for a quick 8 a.m. road trip. The radio is already blaring. "It's a little early for the metal, all right, dude?" growls Johnny 3 Tears from the backseat, slouching in his aviator shades with a tall cup of coffee. He lights a cigarette. Morning has broken for the band Hollywood Undead, as three of its vocalists ride toward the local "new rock alternative" FM station, ready to talk up that night's concert and "Swan Songs," their debut album of anxious hip-hop and rock, just certified gold with sales of 500,000.
NEWS
March 18, 2004 | Max Brooks, Special to The Times
"When there is no more room in hell, the dead will walk the Earth." Ken Foree's words chill your blood as the trailer for "Dawn of the Dead" flashes before your eyes: screaming victims, frantic news reports, collapsing police barricades. And suddenly there they are, zombies, the living dead! Bleeding, snarling, running ... running? Do zombies move that fast? And why aren't they shouting "More brains!"? Don't zombies eat brains? Are these even real zombies?
ENTERTAINMENT
October 12, 2012 | By Mary McNamara, Los Angeles Times Television Critic
The trouble with zombies is that after a while they get boring. They do not scheme, they do not regret, they do not engage (mercifully) in any form of seduction. They just lurch around moaning, trying to eat whatever human flesh crosses their path. Putrefaction may continue - the elements are notoriously unkind to the undead - but even that gets old; fans soon develop the sort of imperturbable gag reflex that allows the "Bones" team to do its job. Which is why stories about a zombie apocalypse, such as AMC's "The Walking Dead," are not really about zombies; they're about survival and human nature and the rise of a new social order under extreme duress.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 21, 2012 | By Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times Film Critic
History remembers him as Honest Abe, Father Abraham, the Great Emancipator, even the Illinois Rail Splitter. But"Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter"? Who knew? Now, the secret life of the 16th president of the United States and his passion for ridding the world of "immortal blood sucking demons" is revealed for all to see. In 3-D, no less. It turns out that it wasn't just the lack of air-conditioning that made Lincoln miserable in the fetid air of 1860sWashington, D.C., it was all the undead he had to eradicate before the slaves could be freed and the Union made whole.
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