Army of the Dead time loop theory will make you want to re-watch Zack Snyder’s zombie film

·2-min read
 (Netflix)
(Netflix)

There’s an Army of the Dead theory doing the rounds that might make you want to re-watch the film.

While Zack Snyder’s film is already a mix of several genres – zombie, heist film, thriller – some viewers believe there is also a time travel element at play.

Since it was released on Friday (21 May), the film has shot to the top of the Netflix charts, perhaps boosted by the many Easter eggs and background details hidden away. If one Snyder film lends itself to another viewing, it’s this one (despite people’s complaints about the running time and what appears to be a camera glitch in several scenes).

The theory, highlighted by GamesRadar, wonders whether the zombie-fighting heist team, led by Dave Bautista’s Scott, are caught in a time loop, in which they are playing out the heist again and again.

You might recall how the character Vanderohe (Omari Hardwick) actually mentions how this could be the case after seeing a group of dead bodies wearing similar clothing to what they’re wearing. He asks if it’s “another team – or is it us?”, adding: “It could be us in another timeline and we’re caught in some infinite loop of fighting and dying and fighting and dying.”

He continues by describing Hiroyuki Sanada’s character, the orchestrator of the heist as: “The puppetmaster, the devil, God. We’re… simply pawns in some in some perverse play where we’re destined to repeat our failures. Finally, in some mind-bending, ironic reveal – it all begins again.”

Look closely, though, and there is actually some strong evidence to back Vanderohe’s ideas up.

In particular, the evidence suggests that this is the fourth time they have undertaken the casino heist. In Dieter’s dream sequence, we see that inside the vault, there are three guns leaning against the wall – the exact same gun being used by Guzman. The theory suggests that after this heist, he will leave another gun behind in the vault.

Dave Bautista in Zack Snyder’s genre-bending ‘Army of the dead’ (Netflix)
Dave Bautista in Zack Snyder’s genre-bending ‘Army of the dead’ (Netflix)

Going one further, the theory asks if the zombie siege Dieter imagines before they embark on the heist is actually a version of what happened in one of the previous loops. It shows them successfully getting the money

Snyder himself commented on the theory, telling The Film Junkee’s “Vodka Stream”: “I will also say that… there’s a chance – and I’m not saying this is 100% true, and in some ways it’s not – but the group at the table, I mean, it’s pretty subtle, but that’s them also at the table as well as... they get farther every time. Is this the time they made it all the way to the money?”

The cause of the possible time loop is a mystery – however, coming in a film featuring the living dead, it wouldn’t be the strangest thing to occur.

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