Director: Henry Hobson
Writer: John Scott 3
Huh…I was not expecting that. You know what? Lets throw expectations aside. Lets toss out the presumptions of zombie and Arnold Schwarzenegger movies. As far as this reviews concerned, I’ve never seen an Arnold movie, “The Walking Dead,” or anything by George A. Romero. Alright, with all that preconceived conditioning out of the way, how was “Maggie?”
“Maggie” takes place after the world is introduced to a virus that slowly turns its infected into flesh-eating zombies…whatever those are. The government is still intact and it is advised that anyone infected be taken to quarantine. Wade (Arnold Schwarzenegger) is a humble farmer that finds her recently infected daughter at a hospital. Maggie (Abigail Breslin) has about six weeks before she loses her conscious state and attempts to eat anyone around her. Knowing this, Wade takes his daughter home and tries to make her life as comfortable as possible before that time comes.
The family is incredibly conflicted on what to do with the infected Maggie. Wade’s wife, Caroline (Joely Richardson), wants to help as much as possible, but also doesn’t want to be eaten in her sleep by something that looks like her step daughter. So Wade sends the rest of his kids to stay with some relatives and spends as much time with Maggie as possible.
“Maggie” is a slow burn family drama before it’s a horror movie. It certainly has some thrilling elements involved and the scenario is quite horrifying, but those are mere moments in a much more intimate story. Other than the looming danger that Maggie presents to Wade, his life is never really in danger. Wade and Maggie’s relationship in a grief stricken scenario and the choice they must face are the real challenges.
Schwaggenger’s understated performance of a father attempting to instill hope, but also preparing to grieve, is fairly endearing. He portrays a father that is more than willing to end his life for his dying daughter. Breslin also does a magnificent job at displaying damaged optimism. She’s traumatized and depressed alone, but when surrounded by loved ones she does her best to portray a comforting persona. “Maggie” will definitely be a highlight of their acting careers.
The film itself is more about the experience than it is the story arc. The photography is fairly good, but don’t expect to be spell bounded by its composition. “Maggie” is a good movie overall, but it’s just shy of doing something special. With a plot as simplistic as this, it gives the filmmakers a chance to push the envelope in its methods. It doesn’t quite fulfill that. What we get is a story that’s too bare to be endearing and a style that’s too raw too be captivating.
Overall, I give this movie nothing but credit for existing. It’s performed well, the concept is great, and the emotional fortitude behind it is nothing but authentic. It may have its flaws, but it’s trying something new with a sincere purpose behind it. Any movie that does that will get at least three stars in my book.
AGHHHHHHHH – I can’t do this anymore! Fuck it! I love Terminator and Zombie movies!
Whoa, Arnold! That was pretty damn impressive on your part. You embarked on a genre bending zombie film and plunged yourself into a role you’re not familiar with. You still have a hulking physique, but it played as a nice juxtaposition to your quiet humility. Keep on going good sir.
EXTRA TID BITS:
– Arnold also looks like Earl Tubb from the comic “Southern Bastards.” He should also keep the beard.
– How do you get a script on a black list?
– SPOILER QUESTION: DO NOT READ PASSED THIS POINT IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO KNOW ANYTHING!!!
So was Wade awake when Maggie was debating on eating him? He looked like he was gripping his gun but decided to keep his eyes closed. Did he choose being eaten over killing his own daughter?