Life doesn’t always turn out the way you expected. Most people in their 30s and up are living a life very different from the one they’d dreamt up for themselves in childhood. Clint Hadson (Elijah Wood) never imagined that he’d be broke and taking substitute teaching jobs to make ends meet. When he shows up to substitute for a fourth grade class, Clint runs into the expected variety of students: the teacher’s pets, the brats, and the bullies. But he also runs into something completely unexpected: a zombie outbreak.
The bad news is that the outbreak is taking place at a school with hundreds of students who far outnumber their wholly under-prepared teachers. The good news is that the zombie virus only affects people who haven’t gone through puberty yet. The other bad news is that extra hormones don’t make you immune to becoming a zombie Happy Meal. You win some, you lose some!
As the faculty at Ft. Chicken Elementary school prepare to fight off their once precocious charges and stay alive, they must also contend with their own personal insecurities and drama, and keep the students who haven’t been turned or consumed yet safe. One of the most charming aspects of Cooties is how the students were depicted: first as vibrant, enthusiastic young people with unique personalities, then as a ravenous hive, as well as how the layers of each adult’s person life impacted their decisions in a life or death situation. A little bit scary, wildly hilarious, infinitely quotable, littered with American pop culture references, and thoroughly entertaining, Cooties is one of the few horror films that’s equally enjoyable for both children and adults.
I give this one 3.75 stars.