The Crazies remake is still relevant

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Although The Crazies is a remake of a 1973 George Romero movie, it didn’t need to update the original premise much to remain relevant. With the imagery of hurricane Katrina still fresh in the American consciousness and the threat of the H1N1 virus constantly in the news, the horrors this movie deals with are all too believable. As the film commences, the residents of a small Iowa town inexplicably start going crazy, and not just a little crazy, but full-on homicidal crazy. Sheriff Dutton (Timothy Oliphant) and his physician wife Judy (Radha Mitchell) appear to be unaffected by whatever is causing this outbreak of insanity, but they still must survive attacks by former friends and neighbors. A government response team is eventually sent in, but they seem more concerned with containment than rescue. The film starts strong, taking time to develop characters, build suspense and make the audience wonder just what the hell is going on. Unfortunately, it falters in the final stretch with an extended action sequence at a truck stop that goes on way too long. ** 1/2

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