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Friday, June 21, 2013

Here's Your Alternative to Seeing World War Z

Posted by Erik Henriksen on Fri, Jun 21, 2013 at 12:59 PM

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Whiny nerds have been doing their reliably obnoxious whining for a while now about how the movie of World War Z has more or less nothing at all to do with Max Brooks' book, on which it's based. Yes, whiny nerds, that's frustrating, but welcome to movies. Personally, I feel like if the filmmakers had replaced the stuff they cut with stuff that was interesting or cool in its own right, there wouldn't be any problem. Alas, they didn't.

If you're still inclined to see World War Z this weekend, don't. But if you still really want to and you flat-out refuse to just sit down and be quiet for five minutes and read the book instead, here's my recommendation for you: the World War Z: The Complete Edition audio book, a new, unabridged version of Random House's already acclaimed World War Z audio book.

A few years ago, shortly after I read World War Z, I found myself driving from Salt Lake City to Portland; on the drive, I listened to the original audio book, and was super impressed. With a great cast and smart, subtle production, each segment of the book gets its own narrator, and the end result is a mosaic of voices that come as close as we'll likely ever get to the sort of Ken Burns-style documentary that would best serve a filmed version of World War Z. Random House's new edition includes the whole book, and the cast is even better:

Featuring five more hours of previously unrecorded content, this full-cast recording is read by F. Murray Abraham, Alan Alda, René Auberjonois, Becky Ann Baker, Dennis Boutsikaris, Bruce Boxleitner, Max Brooks, Nicki Clyne, Common, Denise Crosby, Frank Darabont, Dean Edwards, Mark Hamill, Nathan Fillion, Maz Jobrani, Frank Kamai, Michelle Kholos, John McElroy, Ade M’Cormack, Alfred Molina, Parminder Nagra, Ajay Naidu, Masi Oka, Steve Park, Kal Penn, Simon Pegg, Jürgen Prochnow, Carl Reiner, Rob Reiner, Henry Rollins, Jeri Ryan, Jay O. Sanders, Martin Scorsese, Paul Sorvino, David Ogden Stiers, Brian Tee, John Turturro, Eamonn Walker, Ric Young, and Waleed Zuaiter.

So yes, awesome. Plus, it's cheaper than buying a couple of tickets to see World War Z, only to walk out of the theater sad and disappointed.

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