Here at Nerdophiles our opinions on the World War Z movie are mixed. Some of us thought it was a pretty good movie in it’s own right. Others couldn’t stand the departure from the original book. And let me tell you that book is probably one of the best written zombie books of all time if not the best zombie book of all time. Seriously. I place World War Z on a pedestal above pretty much all other books regardless of the genre. It’s one of my very few five star books and it is the only book that I gift to people because it needs to be read – by everyone.
The fact that people have very different opinions about the movie is understandable.
One thing that I don’t think people can really argue about, though, is that the World War Z art book (complete with screenplay) is a great little companion to the film. The bulk of the text in the book is made up of the screenplay, concept art, and a few screenshots from the finished film – so don’t expect too much of an explanation of the making of the film. That’s actually a selling point for me. I’m not a technical person so when I look at art books what I really want to do is just look at as many pictures as possible.
That’s not to say that you don’t get some insight from the people who made the movie. There are tons of quotes intermixed with the actual art and the screenplay that let you know what people were thinking as they were making the film. The book is separated largely by location so each time they shift locations you’ll get a few quotes talking about what they thought about filming there and some of the benefits or challenges that came with it. You’ll also find a lot of little tidbits about how the people making the film felt about the process as a whole and what they hoped to convey through the movie.
I think the only real weakness of the book is that at the end they tried to cram in some more technical art book-y stuff. There’s maybe thirty pages at the end where the screenplay has ended and they throw you into a section dedicated solely to the zombies. Which is cool. But it’s half concept art and then half computer animation and green screen. There’s not a whole lot of explanation – just quotes now and again. I think maybe they could have fleshed out this section a bit more. Or maybe they could have added another twenty to thirty pages to the art book and taken the time to really beef up other parts of the book, too, and truly made it a screenplay/art/tech walkthrough hybrid.
I also would have appreciated a section where they explained why they completely threw the original source material to the wind.
Other than that, though, it really is great.
And basically now I just really want to marry a concept artist because, holy shit, I want to be able to marry a guy who can make me these post apocalyptic scenes so I can hang them up around my living room. Seriously, the concept art in this thing is absolutely gorgeous.
If you’re a fan of the film, it’s definitely worth picking up. And it’s worth a look even if you’re just a fan of zombies because like I said. The concept art in this book is beyond frame worthy. io9 released a few scans of the concept art a little while back but it’s not even close to being the best of the best. FearNet, however, does have some of the more awesome images to share with you. I mean, c’mon. How cool is that shit? I’d read a comic book done up with just concept art images from this film. Teoh Yi Chi also has a very in-depth, awesome review.
I just really love concept art. World War Z: The Art of the Film only serves to fuel that love.