The zombie apocalypse isn't exactly fertile fodder for comedy. I mean, everybody is either dead, zombified or in danger of being eaten.
But God bless Ruben Fleischer, he managed to wring some comedy out of a world overrun by brain-eating abominations -- despite the bleak setting, the quirky way it's presented (complete with "zombie rules") keeps it from ever becoming too grim. Also, there is a lot of splattergore, snappy dialogue, Twinkie lust and the occasional Bill Murray cameo.
Two months ago, a strain of mad cow disease mutated into a zombie plague. Ever since his hot neighbor went zombie and tried to eat him, "Columbus" (Jesse Eisenberg) has been traveling to Ohio. But he ends up having to drive with "Tallahassee" (Woody Harrelson), a hot-headed gun-slinging zombie-killer with a deep love for Twinkies and an even greater love for killing zombies.
Then the two men get hijacked by con artists "Wichita" (Emma Stone) and her younger sister "Little Rock" (Abigail Breslin), who are seeking "Pacific Playland" in Los Angeles... which for some reason they think is zombie-free. The little group grows closer while they take shelter in a Hollywood mansion, but are their bonds strong enough to keep them together when zombies attack?
"Zombieland" is one of those rare comedies that takes a really bleak subject and makes it incredibly quirky and funny. Yes, there's a lot of violence -- the climax is basically one big zombie-sploding celebration of gore -- but the movie never loses its quirky sense of humor. Exhibit A: Tallahassee's ongoing quest for spongy cream-filled Hostess goodness.
Oh, Fleischer does address the losses and tragedy of the zombie apocalypse -- Tallahassee has a tragic backstory, and we often see towns left in abandoned ruins except for the zombies. But he never lets it bog down the story, and instead focuses on oddball comedy (Bill Murray! Everything about Bill Murray!) and dialogue ("My mama always told me someday I'd be good at something. Who'd'a guessed that something'd be zombie-killing?").
And the climax is utterly awesome in every way. Without revealing too much, it pretty much encapsulates everything fun about the movie.... but in concentrated form.
And the actors are all pretty perfect -- Eisenberg effectively plays a nerdy, shy guy riddled with phobias (including clowns), who is the last person you'd expect to survive a zombie apocalypse. And he's perfect next to the rough, tough, delightfully eccentric redneck Harrelson, who roars and blasts his way through any zombie zone -- they're a zombiepocalypse odd couple par excellence. Stone and Breslin aren't quite as much fun as their male counterparts, but the "twelve is the new twenty" brashness is pretty funny.
Zombies are chic right now, but "Zombieland" is definitely something special -- a wild, bloody comedy that doesn't let the zombiepocalypse kill the funny.
This was a light-hearted take on the traditional zombie move. Fun to watch and inventive the movie gave life in to a well covered topic. My all-time standard is Dawn of the dead... and while this movie has many of the same comedic and funny parts it lacks any of the sheer action you get in Dawn of the Dead. This one is somewhere between Dawn of the Dead and Shaun of the Dead to me. A must see and loads of bits that you will enjoy, from the first girlfriend moment to the Bill Murray cameo kudos on the concept and I hope we see a second movie.
An irreverent, ultra-modern and geektastic take on the zombie film. The performances are great and the script, for the most part, is excellent.
Two weaknesses: though the writers are clearly going for tough and independent, the female characters initially come off as opportunistic and mercenary; completely unlikeable. Once they've been set up, however, they're allowed to grow a little (until they're then thrust into the tired role of damsels in distress).
Second: an odd interlude featuring a Big Name Cameo is stretched thin, drags on, and is ultimately a let-down. I actually skip these scenes during rewatches.
That said, don't let the above-mentioned nit-picks dissuade you, Zombieland is a fanatastic addition to the horror-comedy ranks.
A great softcore zombie movie for fans of zombies, humor, and those not-too-serious-films. I personally found this more appealing than other movies like Shaun of the Death since there's less stupid moments (stupid as in not funny stupid just plain stupid) and more humor and storyline which is funny since most zombie movies have little to no story.
Lots of funny moments and scary ones, overall I'd say it'd make a great addition to your collection.
Once in a while a movie will come along which will actually pleasantly surprise you and this one certainly fits the bill. Countless filmmakers have gone to the Zombie well,over and over and over again for years and most leave you with that "been there,done that" feeling.But this 88 minute flick Zombieland,puts its' own fresh twist on things and comes up with a little winner. The story involves a group of four people going cross country trying to stay alive from the world wide Zombie threat around them.The how and the why of the plague is only briefly touched on as having something to do with a contagion mutating from mad cow disease and into humans.We know our main protagonists only through city names.The first and the narrator of the film is Columbus(Jesse Eisenberg).He is a young man who is forced from his solitary existence due to the terrible threat,and sets out for Columbus,Ohio to seek out his parents.His plans get sidetracked when he meets up with Tallahassee(Woody Harrelson).Tallahassee it seems has lost his family and while not the easiest person to get to know,is a Zombie,butt-kicking pro;quite fearless.One of the last pleasures Mr.T has,is to get a hold of a twinkie.To this end they stop into a grocery store but just end up getting their ride stolen(Cadillac SUV) by a couple of con-sisters(Witchita-Emma Stone and Little Rock-Abigail Breslin),who pretend one of them is infected and is about to turn.But the boys soon get a new ride of their own that is a step up;a big yellow Hummer filled with lots of ammo and guns. Back on the road the guys come upon their stolen truck "abandoned" but get taken in once more and get their new ride hijacked by the same girls.But now they are at least all together and the girls head for the Pacific Playland Park,just outside L.A.When they arrive in L.A. Columbus suggests crashing and getting some sleep.To that end Mr T suggests heading for some swanky digs and suggests a stars home;one of his heroes,Bill Murray.Just as they are settling down Bill Murray himself,dressed as a Zombie(to blend in with them) frightens Mr T and Witchita.After Mr T finishes gushing all over Bill they decide to pull a trick on Columbus and Little Rock.Bill walks in on them Zombie-like but quick acting Columbus pulls out his trusty shot gun and shoots Murray.The wound is fatal and he ends up dying! Next morning the girls again steal off with the ride heading to the park as planned.This time the guys know where they're heading and follow them.The girls arrive at night and turn on the power to the entire park.They might as well have turned a big neon sign saying"fresh meat-come and get it",as every Zombie within sight of the park comes-a-runnin'.Soon the girls are surrounded by the creatures but eventually the guys arrive on cue.Through some tense moments and fancy maneuvering the guys rescue the girls.The movie ends with them driving out of the park,the grounds covered in bodies. The movie is quite a smart one with snappy dialogue and the on going narrative by Columbus makes it sound more like a travelogue with tips throughout.His tips always consist of the do's and don't of living in Zombieland such as the "double-tap","don't be a hero","always check the back seat","beware of bathrooms",etc.And each tip is usually shown through cgi on the screen in big white lettering.The action/fun on screen that comes across throughout is a constant reminder not to take what you see or hear too seriously.The time with Bill Murray is a hoot and Murray's reference to seeing Eddie Van Halen at the Hollywood Bowl as a Zombie,or just walking onto a golf course and playing nine holes with no line up and uninterrupted is just typical of the dry sense of humour you will hear in the film.It is what really makes it what it is and work so well. In the technical department the film has been transferred wonderfully onto DVD,no problems there.The extras include several deleted scenes,a featurette,actor/director commentary and the trailer. In conclusion if you want a snappy,smart and funny Zombie movie with a nice twist to it,this is for you.The script and plot are both well written and the movie moves along well throughout.The producers got everything they could out of each scene and then moved along to the next,trying to keep the pace on a even keel;and generally they succeed.Before you know it this enjoyable flick ends after around 85 minutes and,it seems,all too quickly.But they have invoked that age old show biz adage:"Leave'em wanting more".Sequel anyone?