Zombie movies are now a genre onto themselves. Perhaps due to the new popularity of zombie-killin' video games such as Left 4 Dead, people just love watching characters blow away zombies en masse. Now a legitimate commercial force, zombie films such as Zombieland and Shaun of the Dead reveal the lighter side of the undead and the end of the world as we know it.
Not going in expecting too much (I mean, you can't -- can't -- CAN'T -- top Shaun of the Dead) I was pleasantly surprised by Zombieland and its stellar American cast. Jesse Eisenberg, for anyone who hasn't seen Adventureland yet (shame on you!) is a talented young actor who can (gasp!) actually portray a character rather than a charicature! Cera-like in his demeanor, he portrays young Columbus Ohia as a smart nerdy survivor with heart. Everybody is beginning to learn that Emma Stone, who plays Wichita Kansas, is more than just a pretty gace. Abigail Breslin (Little Rock Arkansas) and Woody Harrelson (Tallahasee Florida) have strong resumes that speak for themselves. Woody fans will enjoy his return to a tough guy role, but one not without history and heart.
What makes this movie different and special was its unique usage of Columbus' "rules" of survival in the post-Zombie world, or "Zombieland" as he calls it. These rules, recurring through the entire movie, are used in clever and unexpected ways to enhance the danger or comedy. But will his rules enable our hearty band of survivors to stick together?
There's also a stellar uncredited cameo which may make the movie worth the price of admission to some fans.
The movie culminates with a showdown to beat all showdowns, four against an entire amusement part full of zombies. It's every zombie-fan's dream situation. You're going to love it. Trust me.
5 stars. A unique and fun comedy-horror-adventure-drama.