With a glamorous cast of flesh-eating undead including Iggy Pop, US filmmaker Jim Jarmusch kicked off Cannes' cinema showcase on Tuesday with an acerbic swipe at American society: though the zombie romp lacked the bite some critics had hoped for.
The comedy marked the opening salvo of the Cannes Film Festival, where it will compete for the top Palme D'Or prize alongside the latest offerings from Quentin Tarantino and Pedro Almodovar as well as a clutch of movies by newcomer, young directors.
Set in a nondescript small town where the inhabitants start succumbing to a zombie apocalypse, The Dead Don't Die takes aim at climate change deniers, US politics and a materialistic, smartphone-addicted world all at once.
Bill Murray, a long-time collaborator of the Broken Flowers filmmaker, Adam Driver and Chloe Sevigny star as cops fighting off the growing army of undead, with pop star Selena Gomez and actress Tilda Swinton also among the stellar line-up.
Laden with witty film references – including nods to George Romero's cult 1968 zombie-fest Night Of The Living Dead – the film plays with the artifice of movie-making, with self-aware moments where actors discuss its plot line.
Earlier on Tuesday, Cannes jury president Alejando Gonzalez Inarritu of Mexico – the first Latin American film director to head up the panel – criticised Trump's plans for a Mexican border wall, describing it as "dangerous" and "cruel".
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