Review: Director Jim Jarmusch puts his deadpan stamp on The Dead Don’t Die

Enlarge / Bill Murray, Chloë Sevigny, and Adam Driver star in Director Jim Jarmusch’s deadpan take on the zombie genre, The Dead Don’t Die. (credit: Focus Features)

With The Dead Don’t Die, auteur director Jim Jarmusch puts his unique, deadpan stamp on this staple of the horror genre. As one might expect, Jarmusch’s vision is more ironically cerebral than your typical zombie fare and a bit less viscerally horrifying—even when the aforementioned dead are chowing down on their victims’ viscera. It’s not a perfect film, but it’s got Tilda Swinton brandishing a katana with deadly accuracy against the undead. What’s not to love?

(Some spoilers below.)

Zombies might seem an odd choice of subject matter for this longtime darling of the Cannes Film Festival crowd. Jarmusch’s career took off in 1984 with his first major film, Stranger Than Paradise. Shot entirely in black-and-white (a signature of the director’s early work), the film won the Caméra D’Or at Cannes that year and established the director as a rising creative force in arthouse cinema.

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