Zombie outbreaks and infested post-apocalypse worlds are a dime in a brimming wishing well. In comes Maggie, a zombie movie that focuses on what happens in between.
Life After Beth has toyed with the idea with funny yet disappointing results. Maggie aims to be a thoughtful father and daughter film and accomplishes it, well almost.
Abigail Breslin gives a great performance as an infected teenager. The characterization is believable enough as she treats her zombification with a combination of indifference and petulance. Make-up provides a believable look at decay.
Sadly, Breslin isn’t backed by a solid story.
The post-apocalyptic bleak world is nothing that we’ve seen before – burning crops, skeletal remains of a nondescript town, and ominous woods. There are some scenes painted with dreamy cinematography of late afternoons but only as a reminder that you’re watching an artsy indie film.
Arnold Schwarzenegger is not a dramatic actor – he plays the stoic father well until he has to get outside of his limited acting range.
The father-daughter story is slow, uneventful, and shallow. The script doesn’t develop any of the relationships at home that could have given emotional depth to a character-driven plot.
Without any action, it’s up to the characters and story to lift it. Unfortunately, Breslin’s efforts are not enough to compensate for the barely there Hallmark story and vapor-thin characters.
Maggie is a thoughtful zombie movie. Unfortunately, the script prevents it from becoming the compelling genre movie that it aspires to be as it fails to develop its premise that goes nowhere.
Maggie fails to turn its father-daughter story into an engaging zombie tale because of a shallow plot and characters.