Burying the Ex (2014) — When relationships go to rot

“She’s back, she’s dead, and she thinks we’re still dating!”

Justin’s rating: Not a good sign when the background movies are more interesting

Justin’s review: I’ve never had a super-clingy ex-girlfriend, but I imagine that such a thing couldn’t be worse than what Max (Anton Yelchin) encounters in Burying the Ex. He’s not such a great couple with Evelyn (Ashley Greene), seeing as how he’s a horror geek and she’s a controlling hipster. On the verge of breaking up with her, Max witnesses Evelyn getting smacked into eternity via bus.

Helping him to get over his grief is Olivia (Alexandra Daddario), a horror ice cream maker. Yeah. OK. I guess there’s such a thing. They have a good connection, but their budding romance is threatened by the return of Evelyn, who’s now become a zombie courtesy of a Satan wish figurine. Now Evelyn wants to be with Max forever, and that’s good for nobody.

Burying the Ex is the latest on my “catching up with Joe Dante” tour. It’s an odd R-rated choice for his talents, although the supernatural angle seems up his alley. The premise is a bit flimsy, trying to go for comedy and romance but often landing in a vast puddle of awkward cringe instead.

I don’t know what’s more frustrating to behold on the normally amazing Yelchin — his unfortunate facial hair that makes him look like a movie drug dealer or the fact that Max is the biggest waffler ever. His inability to stand up to Evelyn, even as Olivia comes into his life. It doesn’t make him a fun protagonist to take us through this demented love triangle.

And speaking of characters that I don’t quite buy, Daddario plays Olivia far too insecure to be believable. I don’t think that a bonafide supermodel was the best choice for the role.

So we’re in for and hour-and-a-half of Max failing to both dump and/or kill his ex, and that’s not as rich a source of comedy material. There are better zombie movies out there. There are better zombie comedies out there. Heck, there are better zombie comedy romances, as specific as that may be. So why dawdle with this?

Didja notice?

  • Did not need to see naked man butt this early in a movie
  • Romero and Sons moving truck
  • This is peppy funeral music
  • That’s a lot of embalming fluid
  • If you’re dating a zombie, take her to Club Dead
  • She’s a talky puker
  • Digging yourself out of the grave is hard
  • Zombie yoga is disturbing
  • Prerequisite Dick Miller cameo

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