Eat Brains Love is an absurdly silly zombie movie with a lot of cool ideas. At times it felt like the film was trying to subvert the zombie genre as a whole. At other times, the film had ideas that felt forced and underdeveloped. The result is an enjoyable mixed bag.
Jake (Jake Cannavale) is an uninspired stoner barely making it through high school. Amanda (Angelique Rivera) is one of the popular girls at school and Jake’s dream girl, even though they have limited communication. One day at lunch, Jake and Amanda start attacking and eating their classmates. Confused about what just happened, Jake and Amanda flee the scene and go on the run, quickly realizing they are human-hungry zombies. What they don’t realize is that they are being hunted by Cass (Sarah Yarkin), a teen psychic sent by the government’s top-secret Necrotic Control Division to capture zombies. Cass must track down Jake and Amanda before they find the cure for their new disease.
Eat Brains Love does a lot of things differently than normal zombie movies. These aren’t zombies that infect you by eating you. The way the zombie infection passes is through sex, an almost It Follows, STD twist. Jake and Amanda also aren’t always zombies and only turn that way when they get hungry, angry, or scared. This allows for the two to bond as humans as they cross the country in search of a cure, but also bond as zombies as they gruesomely eat humans.
Because they are still human for a lot of the time, Jake and Amanda have more morals than the typical zombie. They don’t just want to eat any person, they want to eat the worst kind of people. Pedophiles, murderers, or just mean people, giving them a Robin Hood-complex while they become a zombie Bonnie and Clyde as they make headlines across the country with their attacks. This was all really interesting and new for this genre and with great chemistry between Cannavale and Rivera and so gory violence, it was an entertaining watch.
However, there were a few things that didn’t work, most of them involving the government agency that is tracking Jake and Amanda. I liked the idea of a secret government organization who hunted zombies and how they covered up zombie attacks, however, what the government wants with the zombies was cliché and uninspired. I also was not a fan of Cass being a telepath. I liked the character and I liked the performance from Yarkin, but the telepathy didn’t really fit in this movie. If she was just a great agent on the hunt, it would have worked perfectly and made this movie really something special. Unfortunately it felt like a forced sci-fi piece in a movie that is relatively grounded in the real world.
Eat Brains Love is a fun, mostly funny, wildly violent and bloody zombie comedy that does a really solid job of transcending the zombie genre. Though it doesn’t all work, this is still an enjoyable movie for zombie fans.
Eat Brains Love played in the FEATURES category at the 2020 Chattanooga Film Festival.
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