Jim Jarmusch's “THE DEAD DON'T DIE”
A movie review by Dennis D. McDonald
Having only a passing familiarity with Jim Jarmusch’s films I didn’t really know what to expect from THE DEAD DON’T DIE. Let’s just say I found it mildly entertaining.
Performances are solid, with Bill Murray and Adam Driver heading the list. The movie is not laugh out loud funny but is entertaining and features some interesting and unique characters such as Tom Waits’ crazy forest hermit and Tilda Swinton‘s sword wielding undertaker.
Overall though at times it feels half done almost as if this is a first draft. Despite frequent dismemberings and Zombie beheadings, there’s not a lot happening. For example, we spend a lot of time driving around at night watching zombies shamble and lurch around as they seek sustenance. It’s as if Jarmusch was a bit too hands-off in his direction and failed to provide his crew — in front of and behind the camera — with much direction.
Given Jarmusch’s reputation I find that hard to believe, but that’s the way the movie looked to me. There’s something missing here and I’m not sure what it is — spirit? energy? emotional engagement? — who knows. Just don’t expect a high quality zombie film like Maggie or Zombieland.
Review copyright 2019 by Dennis D. McDonald