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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Romantic zombie gives fresh new look

Beth (Aubrey Plaza) is desperate to see her boyfriend after she comes back to life in Life After Beth. Photo courtesy American Zoetrope
Beth (Aubrey Plaza) is desperate to see her boyfriend after she comes back to life in Life After Beth. Photo courtesy American Zoetrope
Beth (Aubrey Plaza) is desperate to see her boyfriend after she comes back to life in Life After Beth. Photo courtesy American Zoetrope
Beth (Aubrey Plaza) is desperate to see her boyfriend after she comes back to life in Life After Beth. Photo courtesy American Zoetrope

By Jamil Oakford/se news editor

Reimagining a genre that’s dominating both film and television is a tall order.

Life After Beth does a stellar job of not just reimagining the zombie genre but also encouraging the audience to stop and think about how people deal with death as a whole.

Starring Aubrey Plaza (Parks and Recreation) and Dane DeHaan (Amazing Spiderman 2, Chronicle), the film focuses more on DeHaan’s character Zach and his experience losing his girlfriend.

The movie starts with him shopping for black napkins at a grocery store and then attending the reception at his dead girlfriend’s parents’ house.

Soon, Zach is bonding with her parents, especially her father, and latches himself onto her family as a way to keep her memory alive.

But it doesn’t take long for Zach to seemingly wear out his welcome with her parents. In an attempt to prove to himself that they’re ignoring him, he goes snooping around the side of the house, catching a glimpse of Beth walking around.

It’s from this point on that the pace starts to accelerate. For a movie that’s just over an hour and a half, the momentum is fast.

DeHaan, known best for playing intense characters, delivers another riveting performance as Zach. DeHaan paints a picture of a grieving boyfriend at war with the feelings brought on by his resurrected girlfriend.

Plaza also gives a vivid performance. Her first scene as Beth is brief, so the audience’s first impression is the scene where Zach finds out about her being alive.

Plaza has the difficult job of playing two versions of the same character. But she brings a slightly bright side to the character even in Beth’s darkest moments.

This movie has scenes that are bound to confound a viewer. Some truly tacky scenes grab the audience’s attention because of how weird they are. And then there are some golden moments that kind of redeem some of those tackier scenes. These are the scenes that viewers surely hadn’t seen before and probably won’t see again anywhere else.

Comedic elements coming from Plaza, DeHaan, John C. Reilly and Molly Shannon give this movie other facets.

This movie was made for people who may have wanted to see a zombie film happen in the middle of The Notebook while thinking of ways to make dramatic scenes humorous. It’s funny, filled with a solid dose of romance, but it’s also got the horror element that only subtly appears here and there.

Don’t be afraid to try out Life with Beth. It’s a fairly short movie. With a highly regarded cast in both television comedy and drama, viewers can’t miss by choosing it.

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