I never thought I’d see the day that one of the greatest action stars of all time would be featured in a zombie film. Sure, we’ve seen the likes of Brad Pitt in virus/outbreak/zombie movies, but seeing the former Governator himself, Arnold Schwarzenegger, in Henry Hobson’s Maggie has blown me away.
Marguerite (Abigail Breslin) is one of the many suffering from the necroambulist virus that has been spreading like wildfire across the states. After two weeks of searching for her, Maggie’s father, Wade (Schwarzenegger), finds her and brings her back home where he can see that she gets the best care possible and spend her last days with her family. Together, they must endure the slow ‘turn’, each dealing with it in their own way.
I can just hear it now — All of the scoffing that must have occurred when news first broke of Schwarzenegger’s involvement in a zombie film. Could this big action star with his more-often-than-not corny catch-phrases be taken seriously in a zombie drama flick? The definitive answer, in my opinion, is a gigantic yes. Out of all of Arnie’s movie roles that I’ve witnessed, I have to say that I am most impressed by this one. The cheesy one-liners are nowhere to be found, thankfully replaced by real emotions expressed by a father who would do anything to keep his daughter at peace in her last days.
In addition to the Austrian Oak’s outstanding performance, Abigail Breslin does a wonderful job as the film’s titular character, Maggie. There have been plenty of films over the years where actors had to portray someone who was suffering from a life-threatening disease. Never before, though, has there been one where that disease was a virus that caused its victims to become the undead. Breslin is remarkable as a frightened girl who has no idea what is to come, as her final day is drawing near. The emotions that she must have had to muster up for this role is hard to even imagine, but she plays the character flawlessly.
There is no mistaking Maggie for a happy or lighthearted experience. Director Henry Hobson, along with his entire team of writers, editors, and cinematographers made sure of that by creating a dingy film from start to finis. Using camera lenses to de-saturate everything and take away any really bright colors keeps the audience in tune with what is going on here; We all know Maggie is going to die… we just have to wait for it to happen.
Maggie is by far the most touching and heartbreaking zombie film I’ve ever seen. For this reason alone, it is a solid and worthy entry into the undead sub-genre, and I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for something just a little bit different than the typical horror flick. The acting is great, the story is moving, and the overall look is crisp and clean, while remaining dreary and depressing.
Be sure to pick up a copy of Maggie on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital HD from Lionsgate, available now.
I give this film 4 garbage disposals out of 5.