There are some ideas that are brilliant, some that are maddeningly dumb, and some that can only be done once. This is one of my favorite books and least favorite movies.
World War Z, as the rest of the title suggests, is a oral history of the zombie war. Basically the book is written interview style with multiple survivors of different cultures, creeds, ages, and social standings We get traumatic accounts of epic battles, tearful goodbyes, and get a cool view of how others outside ourselves would deal with such a catastrophic event. The book never feels repetitive in tone or character arcs and that is what makes it so damn enthralling: genuine feeling characters around the world dealing with classic, simple zombies- a threat most wouldn’t take at face value but Max Brooks demonstrates how endearing and dangerous they are.
The movie ditches almost everything but the zombie apocalypse. We get an obscene amount of fast, kinda green looking, Pg-13 28 knockoff zombies overruning the globe as Brad Pitt goes through action set piece after action set piece trying to find a cure and get back to his family. Watching this hurt. Bad. The stories and characters I loved in the book were striped and replaced with a Emmerich wannabe action movie. I admit, I may be hard on the movie; many folks I know that really enjoyed it never read it at all.
I’m going to say pick one, and whatever you pick, don’t go to the other because chances are you will get royally bent out of shape. I favor the book’s variety and emphasis on strong characters, setting, and simple zombies. Best wishes and may the gaming gods bring you glory.