Army of the Dead trailer

One of the most frequent complaints people have about director Zack Snyder‘s DC superhero movies is that films like Man of Steel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and even the recently-released Zack Snyder’s Justice League take their subject matter too seriously. The tonal clashes that occur when costumed heroes are gravely intoning about things like Mother Boxes one minute and then wailing on Parademons the next are too much for some viewers to handle.

Thankfully, Snyder’s new movie, Army of the Dead, doesn’t have to carry the weight of years’ worth of comic book history or the burden of representing iconic characters who have lived large in readers’ minds for decades. He’s completely unleashed here, free to tell an absolutely insane-looking heist story about a group who ventures into a Las Vegas casino for a massive robbery, only to find themselves face to face with a horde of organized, intelligent, and bloodthirsty zombies. Check out the new trailer below, which looks like a total blast.

Army of the Dead Trailer

I genuinely love that Snyder’s version of a Hell or High Water-style scenario about people who have been left behind in the economy involves zombies. And while I’ve had some issues with several of Snyder’s films, I think this one looks pretty damn good and extremely fun. He served as his own director of photography on this movie, and it really feels like he’s enjoying the freedom to wholly create a world instead of being boxed in by constraints. The zombie tiger is an especially nice touch, although I would have personally preferred that to be a surprise left for the actual film itself instead of the trailer.

Here’s the movie’s official synopsis:

From filmmaker Zack Snyder (300, Zack Snyder’s Justice League), ARMY OF THE DEAD takes place following a zombie outbreak that has left Las Vegas in ruins and walled off from the rest of the world. When Scott Ward (Dave Bautista), a displaced Vegas local, former zombie war hero who’s now flipping burgers on the outskirts of the town he now calls home, is approached by casino boss Bly Tanaka (Hiroyuki Sanada), it’s with the ultimate proposition: Break into the zombie-infested quarantine zone to retrieve $200 million sitting in a vault beneath the strip before the city is nuked by the government in 32 hours. Driven by the hope that the payoff could help pave the way to a reconciliation with his estranged daughter Kate (Ella Purnell), Ward takes on the challenge, assembling a ragtag team of experts for the heist. They include Maria Cruz (Ana de la Reguera), an ace mechanic and Ward’s old friend; Vanderohe (Omari Hardwick), a zombie killing machine; Marianne Peters (Tig Notaro), a cynical helicopter pilot; Mikey Guzman (Raúl Castillo), a go-for-broke influencer and Chambers (Samantha Win), his ride-or-die; Martin (Garret Dillahunt), the casino’s head of security; a badass warrior known as the Coyote (Nora Arnezeder) who recruits Burt Cummings (Theo Rossi), a slimy security guard; and a brilliant German safe cracker named Dieter (Matthias Schweighöfer). Scott finds an unexpected emotional hurdle when Kate joins the expedition to search for Geeta (Huma S. Qureshi), a mother who’s gone missing inside the city. With a ticking clock, a notoriously impenetrable vault, and a smarter, faster horde of Alpha zombies closing in, only one thing’s for certain in the greatest heist ever attempted: survivors take all.

Army of the Dead arrives in select theaters on May 14 and on Netflix on May 21, 2021.

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