Friday, January 11, 2013

Love Makes a Body Warm

Here's the trailer for Warm Bodies, which will be released to theaters on February 1:

First of all, Nicholas Hoult has sure gotten taller since he killed a duck with a loaf of bread in About a Boy. Second of all, love will bring you back to life.

This is Christian resurrection theology of the first order. Love, we might say, is the opposite of Judgment.  Note John Malkovich's role in the preview: pure judge. Judgier than Judy. In Romans 8:3, Paul makes a profound statement about the relationship between love, judgment, and zombies: "For what the law (judgment) was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh (zombies), God did by sending his own Son (love)."

Zombie movies, especially those of George A. Romero, are often a statement about group-think, or the consumer culture. They are even, in at least one case, a statement about human nature. They are rarely, however, a statement about the power of love. In his zombie state, Hoult is a lost cause. Nothing can save him. The best he can say for himself is that he's "conflicted about eating anything with a heartbeat." At the beginning of the preview he proclaims himself dead. Not nearly dead, not deathly ill, not even "undead." He's dead. He is beyond saving (judgment).

Ah, but for love.

Love (God's son) accomplishes what the law (judgment) could not: bring life out of death. Start a stilled heart. Warm a cold body. And after Christ's work is done, God cries out like the prodigal's father: My son "was dead and is alive again; he was lost and now is found" (Luke 15:32).

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