The inhabitants of a small Iowa town are suddenly plagued by insanity and death after a mysterious toxin contaminates their water supply. (IMDb)
This is the horror remake we have been waiting for. Mediocrity after mediocrity after complete disgrace, we have yet to see a horror movie remake worthy of its predecessor’s name, and most importantly, our time. ‘The Crazies’ most certainly changes that, taking the premise and subtext of George Romero’s original, this update gives us a deeper feel for the horror and desperation the main characters experience – all while keeping it fast paced and fun for the audience.
Timothy Olyphant gives a great leading man performance (for which he is much overdo for), being the one we can most relate to and root for throughout the film. After his turn in the somewhat underrated ‘A Perfect Getaway’ and what he does here, Olyphant should soon receive the notice he deserves. He is accompanied by his wife (Radha Mitchell) and his Deputy Sherriff, played by Joe Anderson (nearly stealing the show with an endearing performance).
‘The Crazies’ is a much needed break from the “torture porn” we have recently been over-subjected to in theaters. Setting itself far apart from recent films such as ‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ and the never-ending ‘Saw’ films, this film never goes over-the-top with the violence and gore. Director Breck Eisner made the smart decision to keep things more realistic on a violence level, keeping the audience more engaged in the characters and the story and less disgusted by sadistic violence. Eisner keeps the scares on a more creepy level than just making another gore-fest. With great atmospheric set pieces filled with the sense of dread and tension, this film never truly lets up. The make-up effects are remarkable as well. I always thought the trick to making a truly great horror movie is to keep the focus on the characters, not on the violence, something ‘The Crazies’ does respectfully.
I highly recommend this film to people who like to have a fun time at a horror movie. Keeping the film more focused on the characters and the desperation of their situation and less on the gore, ‘The Crazies’ is most certainly a welcome addition to horror remakes.