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Film / The Crazies (2010)

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The Remake of The Crazies starring Timothy Olyphant, Radha Mitchell, Joe Anderson, and Danielle Panabaker.

This time around, the town is set in Iowa with David and Judy now working as a sheriff and a doctor respectively as they still try to escape their town while avoiding the military and "The Crazies".

The Crazies (2010) provides examples of:

  • All There in the Manual: The motion comic showed not only that the chemical also infected animals, but also how that happened. It also showed how the pilot died and how Rory got infected - in fact, he was the first to try to raise a fuss after witnessing his pigs go berserk and saw the stuff in the water.
  • Ax-Crazy: The three hunters in the swamp who are so gung ho for hunting that they do so in the off season. But the infection makes the whole town Ax-Crazy before too long. People with specific mental focus had their insanity present based on their foci.
    • The hunters' Ax-Crazy manifests as them deciding it's open season on people, infected or not.
    • A mother and son manifest theirs as a single minded desire for revenge on David for killing Rory, the husband/father.
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  • And Then John Was a Zombie: Done for pretty much the entire town, but this trope can be mainly attributed with Deputy Russell Clank. He starts out as the one that helps David the most and even saves his life on several occasions. However as the film progresses, it becomes pretty obvious that Russell is losing his mind, becoming increasingly unstable to the point where he murders someone in an instant Mood Whiplash. Fortunately, he's able to hold it together long enough to help our main characters escape, sacrificing himself so that they can live.
  • Armies Are Evil: Unsurprising as a staple of Romero's films.
    • Played with in the 2010 remake in that the grunts have been lied to — they were told that everyone was infected regardless of appearance, and it's ambiguous as to whether the slain civilians they find in the end are due to them becoming infected or not.
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    • The motion comic suggests that there was a breakdown at the evacuation zone as well, which would explain the slain civilians. Also, seeing as the military probably didn't have the manpower to go after every single infected in such a large, open town, there really was no other way to ensure quarantine after containment was broken.
  • Berserk Button: Do NOT threaten David's wife. You won't live very long to see sunlight ever again. Least until you get a knife through your throat.
  • Boom, Headshot!: How Russell executes a Government Agent who was sent in to investigate the situation.
  • Brick Joke:
    • The group gets a car working, and begins driving to the evac zone. Along the way, a military copter spots them on the highway and makes chase, and they pull into a car wash to lose the chopper. After a fight through the car wash after getting trapped, the car getting smashed to hell and Becca's death, they turn to go back to the car... right as the copter flies by and drops a bomb on it.
    • Initiate containment protocol.
  • Cannibal Larder: The hunters had commandeered a giant freezer in a truck stop and turned it into a larder full of corpses.
  • Captain Obvious: People have started acting insane (sometimes homicidally so), the request for a transfer of a completely whacked out prisoner to a better facility has been ignored, an unidentified and unreported plane has crashed in the town's drinking water, and suddenly everyone has lost phone service and internet connection. Fortunately, Sheriff Obvious is there to tell people that they're in trouble. The people don't listen.
  • Cassandra Truth: David. He goes to the Mayor to warn that he thinks the water supply is contaminated. The Mayor refuses to give his hunch credence - however, it was more due to his concern for keeping a farming community thriving during planting season than ignoring a potential biohazard.
  • Cell Phones Are Useless: The cell phone signal goes down as the virus starts to spread. At least here there is some explanation, seeing as the military likely cut off phone connection in the town.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • The lighter David picks up at Quick Phil's, and the car under the tarp in his barn.
    • Disappointingly subverted with the harvester. It looks like it's being set up to be one, but it's never seen again.
  • Chekhov's Gunman:
    • The Black SUV driver, though the person inside isn't seen when we first see it.
    • The three rednecks that discover the drowned pilot at the beginning of the film go on a human-hunt during the outbreak, killing infectees and non-infectees alike. They even provide the final confrontation with the heroes.
  • Damsel in Distress: Any time David leaves Judy alone for more than two minutes, she ends up facing a crazy and needing rescuing. She beats the shit out of a crazy in the scene wit the no-touch car wash, though, and later in the big rig. Pretty much everyone but Russell qualifies as a '[Pronoun] in Distress' at one point or another. It's that kind of movie.
  • Death by Cameo: Glenn Morshower shows up as a government agent who gets his brains blown out by an infected Russell.
  • Death of a Child: Bill burns his wife and son alive, and all of the townsfolk, save for the four survivors, are killed by the army and their bodies burned.
  • Don't Make Me Destroy You: Sheriff Dutten gives Rory, the first infectee, multiple warnings before finally shooting him, and is visibly devastated upon discovering the shot was fatal.
  • Double Tap: Russell finishes off two Crazies by shooting their twitching corpses, much to the horror of his companions. He attempts to justify it, that he was "just making sure" but everyone in the audience should know that this is the first clue that Russell has the 'Trixie' Virus, and will soon go nuts.
  • Downer Ending: Everyone David and Judy knew is now dead since the government nuked their home town after indiscriminately killing EVERYONE inside. And when they escape to a new town? The same containment protocol will happen.
  • Down on the Farm: Ogden Marsh is an agricultural community.
  • Driven to Madness: The entire town, save a few, thanks to an engineered virus in the water supply. We even get to see some of the people and how normal they were before they lost their marbles:
    • The High School Principal goes from coaching baseball to impaling people with a pitch fork.
    • The Coroner in the Funeral Parlor performs autopsies on deceased townsfolk, then begins mutilating people and sewing their eyes and mouths shut.
    • Rory Hamill's wife and son seem to be decent people, before they went insane and decided to murder David and his wife (thankfully, they fail). For that matter, Rory himself, an alcoholic with two years of sobriety.
    • Last but not least and probably the most notable, a group of hunters are shown hunting game in the marshes (albeit illegally) not long before they decided to begin hunting humans for sport, even converting a store room at a truck stop into a pantry to string up human corpses.
  • Easter Egg: You have to watch through the credits for this - Find the Truth: which leads to a blog and a twitter account for some of the residents of Ogden Marsh.
  • "Facing the Bullets" One-Liner: Russell lives long enough to tell the government "Fuck you for what you've done."
  • For the Evulz: Subverted. It strongly appears initially that the Military is murdering and imprisoning civilians for no reason other than they're the Big Bad Military, but it's later revealed that the soldiers have all been told that every civilian in the area is violently infected, whether or not they appear to be at first, and killing them is purely done in self-defense.
    • Government agents likewise justify what they're doing as a means to keep any other towns or cities from getting contaminated, which is implied to have failed in the end.
  • Gas Mask Mooks: The only human interaction between the townspeople and the soldiers comes when they grab one named Billy Babcock and pull his mask off, and when Russell charges their blockade.
  • Groin Attack: With a buzzsaw.
  • Hate Plague: Of a very literal kind.
  • Here We Go Again!: When David and Judy finally make it to Cedar Rapids, the same military satellite from the beginning orders for another containment procedure to start there.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: By Russell, doubling as a case of dying as himself.
  • He's Dead, Jim:
    • Subverted. After David shoots the first townsperson to display the crazies, he goes to check on his vitals.
    • Played straight in many other examples, though. The drowned parachuting pilot is examined by the ME.
    • The funeral home and the medical examiners' office scenes are justified examples, as is the scene where David, Judy, Russell and Becca watch Scotty and his mother shot down and then burned by flamethrowers.
    • The scenes involving truckloads of burned bodies, the hunters' freezer full of people, etc.
  • How We Got Here: The film begins with the town burning to the ground. It lets that image sear the retinas for a bit before it flashes away to "two days earlier:".
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: This Romero staple is also present in both the original and the remake; while the virus certainly causes insanity and violent tendencies in its hosts, it should be noted that most of those infected maintain self-awareness and personality, some retain their full intelligence, and some aren't even violent at all. The murderous acts committed by those who do turn violent seem to stem from their own deep, subconscious desires, such as for revenge, or for an "entertaining" hunt, or to slice up on living bodies. As such, it can be argued that Trixie doesn't make the townsfolk murderers, it just brings out their violent intentions.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: The government agent in the SUV says that their measures are to stop an even bigger spread — "What would you rather have, a global pandemic?" The horrible irony is that, given how ambiguous the ending is, it might well wind up like that anyway.
  • The Immune: David, Judy, and possibly her unborn child are all immune to the virus.
  • Impaled Palm: The town sheriff gets a boning knife through his palm. Later in the same scene, he grabs a Crazy woman by the throat with the same hand, sending the knife into a major blood vessel.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: The people who get pitchforked while strapped to hospital beds and completely unable to escape. At least they're crazy.
  • Improbable Weapon User:
    • Not only are the crazies able to use weapons, but they're creative enough to turn a car wash into a deathtrap.
    • There's the knife that was stabbed through David's hand.
  • It's the Only Way to Be Sure: A nuclear weapon is employed to stop the spread of the infection beyond Ogden Marsh.
  • Jump Scare: Many. Mostly characters getting grabbed or eyes or faces suddenly appearing.
    • Even the goddamn DVD Menu has one, involving a photoshop of a little girl in a gas mask suddenly lurching at the audience in time to the music. While not much of a jump scare, it's still quite scary/creepy to those who aren't expecting it.
  • Kill the Cutie: Becca, when one of the crazies hangs her at the car wash.
  • Kill It with Fire: The second infected man does this to his wife and son. And the military does it to the whole town from more than one angle!
  • Kubrick Stare: The crazies sport this. It's even lampshaded by one of the police officers when he compares the second infected person to the first one (Bill to Rory).
  • Mercy Kill: Russell's death at the hands of the soldiers can double as this to prevent him from becoming fully infected.
  • Mouth Stitched Shut: Eyes too in the medical examiner's office.
  • My Car Hates Me: The carwash scene.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • While other characters and the ending credits only refer to him by his first name, Russell at one point mentions his surname is Clank, a reference to the character from the original he's based on.
    • When Russell stops the government SUV, he says to the driver, "Welcome to Pierce County, the friendliest place on Earth, asshole." This is a reference to a sign which appears in one of the posters (or vice-versa).
  • Newscaster Cameo: The newscaster in the credits is Bruce Aune, a real KCRG-TV9 anchor.
  • No Communities Were Harmed: The film takes place in the fictional town of Ogden Marsh in the also fictitious Pierce County, Iowa. Cedar Rapids, the city David and Judy escape to at the end of the film, is real however.
  • No FEMA Response: The remake has the first city cordoned off and Fuel Air Bombed. Worse, they make everybody think they're evacuating, when they're really just herding them into trucks to execute them with machine guns and burn the bodies. Survivors make it to another city which is then targeted for the same treatment.
    • The latter could possibly be an aversion. There was evidence outside civilian help had been brought in (civilian ambulances at the evacuation point) and the motion comic strongly suggests there was a breakdown of order at the evacuation point after the containment area was breached.
  • Not Using the "Z" Word:
    • Given that the infected remain intelligent, and in a few cases extremely creative, this might be justified.
    • They also do not eat flesh. And, unless David was infected from the beginning (He did happen to get through the military's inspection) the "virus" does not appear to be a virus at all since he didn't become infected after having infected blood in an open wound. It sounds more like a chemical weapon than biological.
    • Averted in the motion comics where the later infected very obviously bite people and one of the hunters starts eating a soldier.
  • Nuke 'em
  • Oh, Crap!: At the truck stop, when Judy reaches down to help David into the truck, just as they're about to make their escape, he feels a hand grab his ankle. The look on his face says it all.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: The Virus (which is waterborne instead of being spread via Plague Zombies) turns the infected into Technically Living Zombies, and is technically a Hate Plague. The infected remember how to walk, talk, drive, use tools and do all that stuff that'd usually be used by aliens or fairies as evidence that Humans Are the Real Monsters, but they're off enough in their heads that they become Ax-Crazy machines who use human ingenuity to gruesomely torture and kill indiscriminately. As the infection worsens, the infected look more zombie-like. It's demonstrated in the film that the infected only have a lifespan of a matter of days once they're infected.
  • Outdrive the Fireball: Subverted. The nuke still overtakes them and blasts the truck off course, but they survive with minor injuries.
  • Pac Man Fever: The second motion comic has random bleep-bloop sounds coming from Nicholas' Nintendo DS. When his DS is shown later falling to the ground, a generic pixilated landscape is shown.
  • Parachute in a Tree: The skeletal remains of a long-dead parachuter are found entangled in a tree.
  • Pater Familicide: Bill does this to his wife and son, but instead of killing himself or blaming someone else, both of which is what a typical family killer would do, he goes on with his life until he gets arrested.
  • The Plague: The payload of the plane that went down and contaminated the water.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Billy Babcock, one of the soldiers who was briefly held hostage by David, Russell, Judy and Becca before he is released by them, is one due to admitting that he did not sign up to take innocent unarmed lives, realizing they were lied to about wearing a gas mask to avoid death, which apparently does not happen to Babcock and apologizing for what happened to their town. In return for being shown mercy, Babcock doesn't rat out on them to his platoon as they moved out.
  • Punny Name: Quick Phil's gas station/diner.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Sheriff David Dutten
    • Also, Deputy Russell Clank, that is before he becomes infected.
  • Recovered Addict: Rory is known as the village drunk, even though he had stopped drinking two years before the events of the film. When he walks with a gun to the baseball field in the middle of a game and does not seem to understand what is happening around him, the sheriff believes he started drinking again. When Rory dies, however, the tests show that he had no alcohol in his blood.
  • Reluctant Psycho: After Russell realises he’s infected and slowly going mad from the disease, he’s visibly distraught, and ultimately chooses to end his own life helping David and Judy escape before he loses what little sanity he had left.
  • Scenery Gorn: Right after the big explosion.
  • Scenery Porn: There are many landscape shots showcasing fields and farms throughout the film. Some are even taken at sunrise or sunset.
  • Sequel Hook: David, Judy and their unborn child make it to Cedar Rapids. Then the military satellite from the beginning orders to "Initiate containment protocol." In addition, a news broadcast is interrupted by at least one of the crazies in the credits.
  • Sinister Scraping Sound/Sword Drag: The school principal with his pitchfork as well as the hunters at the truck stop with his knife.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: The happy "Bring Me Sunshine" by Willie Nelson is played during the credits, even though the disease is still spreading.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Judy.
  • Stay with Me Until I Die: Russell, once he finally realizes he's infected, asks to walk with David and Judy for a little while longer. He rewards their kindness by pulling a Heroic Sacrifice to let them evade the barricade.
  • Surprise Vehicle: Despite being surrounded by flat terrain with no buildings, they don't notice there's a helicopter gunship searching for them until it's almost overhead. The 'copter doesn't seem to notice them, either.
  • Tainted Veins: A late symptom of infection with the Trixie virus.
  • Technically Living Zombie: The infected also remain alive.
  • Thousand-Yard Stare: The infected sometimes have this when they're non-violent.
  • The Virus: A bio-weapon derived from the same family of viruses as rabies, which over the course of several days makes its infected hosts descend into homicidal mania and then makes them go from looking normal to gaining freaky eyes and wormy grey skin. The Trixie virus' infected victims can crudely mimc human behavior but it should become clear to any common-sensed person within 30 seconds that they're behaving off.
  • Zombie Apocalypse
  • Zombie Infectee: Russell. He recognizes this, and delivers a Heroic Sacrifice to distract the military to give the protagonists a chance to get past the quarantine.


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