Though Zack Snyder’s zombie heist film “Army of the Dead” begins with a lightheartedly gruesome opening scene that feels like a recap of a prequel that doesn’t exist (yet), the mood shifts dramatically by the end. After the dust, gore, and guts have settled, almost nothing has gone as planned for the main characters or the audience, and much of what happens next is left to the audience’s imagination.
Granted, there is no “next” for many of the characters because they were either destroyed by zombies, blown up in a nuclear explosion, or both.
However, a couple of fates are left unresolved, raising concerns about what will happen to the fortunate few who survived the ruins of Las Vegas.
Audiences may also wish for more information on some of the film’s more perplexing plot points, some of which seem to be posed on purpose only to be ignored later. Here are some of the main unanswered questions in “Army of the Dead,” ranging from origin myths to future possibilities.
There will be spoilers ahead.
Where Did Zeus Originate?
“Army of the Dead,” like most zombie films, isn’t really concerned with describing the science behind its undead outbreak. All we know is that Zeus (Richard Cetrone), the Zombie King, was being transported in some kind of military convoy when one of the vehicles was involved in an accident outside of Las Vegas, and then proceeded to wreck havoc on the city. However, no one ever asks how he ended up on the military transport in the first place.
Two of the soldiers speculate on what they’re transporting until the horrific events of the movie begin, revealing that Zeus’ very presence must be highly secret.
The last thing they think about before something goes wrong is the possibility that the US military has captured an alien, which doesn’t sound so far-fetched until they know they’re dealing with a zombie.
It raises the question of whether the film is implying that Zeus’ origins are extraterrestrial — maybe not little green men (zombies are, after all, human first), but some kind of alien virus, similar to the premise of “The Andromeda Strain.” The reality is anyone’s guess, since the film doesn’t seem to care about giving us any hints.
What Was The Destination Of The Army Caravan?
We don’t know where Zeus came from, who he was before he turned into a zombie, or what caused his transformation in the first place, and we don’t know what the military has planned for him either. We have no idea where the convoy was headed; the only hint we have is that it passed through Las Vegas.
What we do know is that none of the passengers in the caravan have any idea what kind of freight they were carrying, since the dispatcher on the other end of the radio is the only one who knows the soldiers are in danger when Zeus’ cage breaks open.
We’re puzzled as to why no zombie experts (if such a thing exists) accompanied such valuable cargo, leading us to wonder what was really going on. It seems strange that the military would not send anyone who knew how dangerous Zeus was, particularly if zombies were being developed as a weapon.
So, why was he moved in the first place? What was he up to? What was in store for him when he arrived at his destination? And why didn’t someone in charge of transferring him seem to be aware of his existence?
How Did The Zombie Apocalypse Manage To Remain So Contained?
The image of an army of the undead swarming the streets of the City That Never Sleeps (or dies, apparently) while a wall of shipping containers is built around them, enclosing them, is striking, but we have some questions about how it all came together.
Not only would it necessitate a massive number of shipping containers — even though the perimeter wall was only designed to contain the Las Vegas Strip, it would entail 3,712 containers covering a 24 mile perimeter, according to news reports at the start of the film. We know that the military and civilian fighters manning the perimeter did their best to keep the zombies contained inside, but it seems impossible that at least a few would have escaped, spreading the epidemic outside the city limits of Las Vegas.
Furthermore, given that “Army of the Dead” depicts animals being infected with the zombie virus, it seems extremely unlikely that no animals would have escaped. A bird, rat, or other small creature would almost certainly have had no trouble getting through or around the container wall, resulting in a wildfire-like spread.
That’s not even taking into account the fact that the containers weren’t necessarily impenetrable, given how quickly Lilly (Nora Arnezeder), the Coyote, was able to get through them. The intelligent Zombie King and his army of intelligent Alphas should have been able to find out a way to get away.