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Life After Beth
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Life After Beth (2014)

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Plot Summary:
"Zach is devastated after his girlfriend, Beth, unexpectedly dies. When she suddenly rises from the dead, he sees it as a second chance and decides to do and say every thing he wishes he had while she was still alive."


Review by
Nina Romain
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@NinaRomain
Review Date: 26 September 2014 My Rating: out of 5

 

The course of true (undead) love ne'er did run smooth! Boy meets girl, girl dies and comes back to life, boy tries to make sure everyone lives happily ever after...during a zed-apocolypse.

No sooner has the funeral of 20-something Beth (Aubrey Plaza) taken place, her belongings are being packed into boxes by her grieving family. Her former boyfriend Zach (Dane DeHaan) asks if he can have her scarf as a momento, but then things start to get seriously odd. He notices her while her brand new grave seems to have been freshly dug up. Sadly wearing her woolly scarf in the blazing LA sun, he suddenly thinks he sees Beth in her house, completely unharmed.

Her parents insist she’s fine (“It’s a resurrection!”) and are happy for she and Zach to continue seeing each other. Before it turns into the zombie version of Twilight, their daughter starts acting strangely, eating Zach’s car upholstery on a drive to the beach, and then when arriving, accidentally destroys a beach hut. And why does everyone suddenly insist on listening to soothing “smooth jazz”, as Beth seems to like it?

However, despite the protestations that everything is wonderful, Zach begins to suspect that Beth's reappearance is not quite the happy event it seems; why does she seems more worried about her upcoming academic test than the terrible rash on her face? Meanwhile, more undead start coming out of the woodwork, and “smooth jazz” is being played everywhere, to try to calm the invasion, and the horror of the few survivors.

To complicate things further - in case this was needed – a former childhood friend arrives, who seems to fancy Zach. After he accidentally runs Beth over in his chewed up car, can the course of true (undead) love continue to run smooth? It’s time to take her on that romantic hike in the LA hills and see if there really is life after Beth.

This budget American zom-rom-com fails to be as funny as Shaun of the Dead or as quirkily funny as Zombieland, but there are some good one liners. Look out for the naked zombie who wanders the deserted streets, politely asking if she is near a carwash, and comedic support from the Zach’s gun-toting brother (Matthew Gray Gubler) who thrives in the zed-apocolypse, and Beth's parents John C. Reilly and Molly Shannon are reliably funny.

OVERALL SUMMARY
This slacker rom-zom-com needs to sharpen its satirical bite in places and pick up the slightly shambling pace, but its sweet nature and reliably comic performances make it an enjoyable addition to alternative love stories.



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