“The Crazies” Leaves Viewers Begging for More

James Cullinane

 

"The Crazies" has already been labeled one of the best horror movies of the new year.
"The Crazies" has already been labeled one of the best horror movies of the new year.

 

James Cullinane

Class 0f 2012

“Fear thy neighbor”.  No three words could be used to describe the plot of “The Crazies” any better.  Director Breck Eisner’s remake of the 1973 horror film certainly does not lack excitement.  The town of Ogden Marsh is the definition of a small town.  Most citizens of this tight knit, farming community have known each other since childhood.  After the water supply of Ogden Marsh is contaminated with nuclear waste, people begin to act strange.  Slowly, the entire town begins to come infected with a never before seen disease, causing them to become zombie-like murderers.   The question for these citizens is “who do you trust, when everybody is trying to kill you?”.

“The Crazies” centers around Sheriff David Dutton (Timothy Olyphant) and his wife Judy Dutton (Radha Mitchell), who is also the town doctor.  David and Judy are one of the most respected couples in Ogden Marsh and are expecting their first child.  When it is discovered that this town has become contaminated, pressure is placed mainly on David and Judy.  Not long after, the government sends an abundance of armed troops to Ogden Marsh.  The whole town is brought to makeshift camps and either “treated” for the disease, or put into cages.  What the people of Ogden Marsh do not know, is that the government plans to perform massive genocide on the entire population, not just those infected with the disease.  When the government troops plan to execute Judy because of a fever caused by her pregnancy, David decides to run back into town with Judy and fellow survivors ( Joe Anderson and Danielle Panabaker).  With both the “crazies”, and the government coming after them, it becomes obvious that the foursome will lose almost all faith, second-guessing everything, even each other.

The power of the individual is contrasted with the power of government throughout “The Crazies”.  The contaminated water supply came from a botched military flight, ruining and eliminating the lives of almost all citizens of Ogden Marsh.  With no remorse, the government goes into this small town to kill everybody who has been exposed to this disease, thinking nothing of the destruction they are causing.  Slightly veiled allusions to the holocaust exist throughout the film.  The government camps are shockingly similar to Nazi concentration camps of World War II.  The troops constantly kill civilians in a brutal manner, without knowing why they are doing these things or who is telling them to do this.  An undeniable faith in the United States is foreshadowed by the incredible number of American flags shown throughout the first portion of the film.  Ogden Marsh is the prototypical American town, but is rejected by their countries government when they are in the worst need of assistance.

“The Crazies” is an incredible example of what modern horror films should be.  Eisner’s interpretation of the 1973 original will send chills down viewer’s spines.  The entire film is action packed.  Any potential viewers who do not handle scary movies well should forget about buying a ticket for “The Crazies”.  “The Crazies” is not your typical horror movie.  Its unpredictable plot and constant underlying themes will leave viewers wondering for days.