Netflix has released the first 15 minutes of Army of the Dead online, revealing the start of Zack Snyder’s new zombie apocalypse. The film stars an ensemble cast led by Dave Bautista and featuring Ella Purnell, Omari Hardwick, Ana de la Reguera, Theo Rossi, Matthias Schweighöfer, Nora Arnezeder, Hiroyuki Sanada, and Tig Notaro, among others. Army of the Dead releases in theaters on May 14 and on Netflix for streaming on May 21.
Set during the events of an escalating zombie apocalypse, Army of the Dead follows a group of elite commandos who attempt to rob a Las Vegas casino vault while the city is overrun by the undead. Early reviews have praised the movie’s style, cast, and absurdist zombie world, though some critics have complained of pacing issues and a story that doesn’t stay exciting all the way through. Army of the Dead is Zack Snyder’s first return to the world of zombies since his 2004 breakout remake of Dawn of the Dead.
The film’s first 15 minutes have been officially released ahead of the theatrical premiere, giving fans a look at all the undead-slaying action to come in the full film. Snyder has created a curious, lore-filled zombie world, which is on full display in the movie’s opening scenes. Watch the first 15 minutes of Army of the Dead below.
Army of the Dead opens with an extended sequence revealing the (oddly comical) origins of the Las Vegas zombie outbreak. The 15 minute segment includes Area 51 jokes, undead Elvis impersonators, some classic Vegas tunes, and lots of bloody murder at the hands of the zombies themselves. It’s absurd, stylish, and pretty fun all around, giving an encouraging preview of the full film about to release in theaters.
Though Army of the Dead mainly focuses on characters who go unseen in the opening sequence, the setup is important for both the film and what comes after. Netflix has already ordered a prequel film and an animated spinoff series set in Snyder’s new zombie universe, so establishing the nature and origins of the outbreak is crucial to the story’s later expansions. Of course, not everything is explained, and the actual nature of the alpha zombie who initially escapes from Area 51 is still shrouded in mystery. Some of those questions may be answered in the final version of Army of the Dead, but some may be withheld for Netflix’s other projects.