In the end was the word. Adapted from scriptwriter Tony Burgess’s own novel, ‘Pontypool Changes Everything’, this cerebral horror movie plays Scrabble with the genre’s cinematic lingo, aiming for a disorienting triple-word score with the concept of a language-borne virus. As ex-shock jock Grant Mazzy (Stephen McHattie) keeps the listeners of CLSY Radio 660 abreast of the local news in Pontypool, Ontario, the station’s ‘eye in the sky’ traffic reporter phones in to say that military vehicles are blocking the main road, and there’s been an incident in the town centre. Then Constable Bob Roseland phones in to play back a disturbing 911 call, in which the caller babbles about Hitler, hurricanes and windscreen wipers. Outside the basement studio, flesh-eating zombies are creating cannibalistic chaos; inside, there are hints that off-colour station assistant Laurel Ann (Georgina Reilly) may already be infected. Talky, tense and claustrophobic, ‘Pontypool’ is a post-modern mash-up of Orson Welles’s notorious ‘War of the Worlds’ radio broadcast and Romero’s ‘Night of the Living Dead’.