The most notable thing about 2013’s World War Z is how completely unnotable it really is. The film was neither good, nor bad — I don’t even know if it was mediocre, if we’re being entirely honest. It was just there, listlessly shuffling through its half dozen or so set pieces, sandwiched between a completely empty story, flat CGI, and Brad Pitt looking stoic in a scarf. There is so little that is memorable about World War Z, never a point where I thought “wow, this is really terrible” OR “huh, this is actually pretty good.” It’s the cinematic equivalent of raw Spinach: it doesn’t taste good, nor does it taste bad. It just is.
And the last descriptor I would use to describe the filmography of director David Fincher is “Spinach-like”, so consider me surprised that, shit, he’s actually going to direct the sequel to World War Z. Like, he’s going to spend thousands of hours conceptualizing, filming, and promoting this movie. The guy who directed Fight Club, Zodiac, The Social Network, and Gone Girl. THAT David Fincher.
Consider me pretty damn surprised at this development, to say the least.
I just didn’t think that this would at all be his M.O. — after launching his career with the critically panned Alien 3, the man has been extremely reluctant to attach himself to big action blockbuster fair. His films are usually smaller dramas and/or thrillers, and have been for two decades running. And though you can make the argument that no director can escape the fate of franchise directing in this current age, I would argue that Fincher is one of the few that could: his movies generally succeed both critically and commercially, and he’s coming off his biggest hit yet in Gone Girl. Simply put, World War Z 2 is the kind of movie that is done by either A) a studio hack (hello, Marc Forster) or B) an up-and-comer who wants to prove himself on a big budget property. Fincher is neither of those things, which makes his likely involvement in the sequel pretty baffling overall. I’ve been scoffing about the concept for months, and never for one second thought it could happen. But, lo and behold, it’s happening.
Just another day in the post-2015 world, I guess.
But best of luck to ya anyways, Fincher —I don’t know what you see in the project, but I hope you have fun making this zombie trite regardless. Who knows, maybe you’ll be able to turn this into something special: if anyone can, it would be you. Just ask Aaron Sorkin to write the script with you or something — I know it’s something he would never in a million years work on, but who knows? It’s 2017, after all. Reality is in chaos. The constants of the world are in shambles. Nothing makes any sense anymore.
Go see World War Z 2.
Also published on Medium.