Sunday, 28 February 2010

Film review: The Crazies (****)

The Crazies (Remake)
A surprisingly effective reboot of George A. Romero's 1973 political horror-thriller, Breck Eisner's gripping, edgy remake paints the small, farming community of Ogden Marsh, Iowa under siege from both its own residents, infected by the accidental distribution of a biochemical weapon in their water supply and transformed into violent psychopaths, and the US military who quarantine the town, leaving those inside — among them sheriff Timothy Olyhant and his pregnant doctor wife Radha Mitchell — to fend for themselves.

Both the script, by Ray Wright and Scott Kosar, and direction upscale the spectacle of the original, while maintaining the terror, with Eisner paying homage to Romero's picture by restaging several key scenes. Olyhant, Mitchell and England's own Joe Anderson as Olyhant's deputy lend the film emotional depth; the car wash and bedroom hostage sequences are genuinely nerve-wracking; while the apocalyptic denouement is wonderfully downbeat. An intense and serious shocker.


J.D. said...

Wow, this actually sounds like it might be good! I have to say I've been resistant to this film for quite some time out of my love for the original and my general distaste for remakes but after reading your review and few other positive notices amongst bloggers, I'm actually quite interested in checking this one out. I like both Olyphant and Mitchell so the film certainly has that going for it. The only thing that held me back was Eisner as the director. SAHARA was a mess but it looks he's finally been let out of director's jail.

Mark Salisbury said...

I've always been a huge fan of Radha Mitchell. Have you ever seen her in Marc Forster's Everything Put Together? Terrific film, terrific performance.

Didn't see Sahara. Trailers looked awful, so skipped it.

J.D. said...

I haven't seen that Forster film. Hmm... I may have to check that one out.

Yeah, don't waste your time on SAHARA, even if you catch it for free on TV. It's bad.

Mark Salisbury said...

It's really good. Very Nic Roeg, too,