Saturday, October 3, 2009


Film Review by Kam Williams

Headline: Survivors Seek Sanctuary in Amusement Park in Gory Horror Comedy

With Mad Cow disease having turned the planet into a post-apocalyptic dystopia where most of humanity has morphed into a cannibalistic race of mutant zombies, Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) opts to travel from Texas to Ohio to check on his parents. The only reason the neurotic college student is among the few people still uninfected is because he’s so neurotic he never left his dorm room while the epidemic swept across campus. Now, as the nerdy weakling begins the dangerous trek home, it doesn’t look like he’s likely to last long battling the bloodthirsty marauders, even if he has prepared a helpful list of dos and don’ts.

Lucky for him, he soon crosses paths and buddies up with his polar opposite on the macho scale, Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), an alpha male with a muscle car and no qualms about killing to survive. Tallahassee has quite an arsenal at his disposal, weapons ranging from guns to bats to hedge clippers for snapping off the heads of the walking dead. However, since he’s starving and craving Hostess’ Twinkies, his first order of business is raiding an abandoned supermarket.

There, the two encounter Wichita (Emma Stone) and her younger sister, Little Rock (Abigail Breslin), streetwise teens who steal the guys’ auto. But a little farther up the road, conceding that there’s strength in numbers, the girls have a change of heart and pick the boys back up. Then, the quartet decides to drive westward to Hollywood where an abandoned amusement park is rumored to be zombie-free.

This is the engaging-enough premise of Zombieland, a splatter flick marking the noteworthy directorial of Ruben Fleischer. Mr. Fleischer has fashioned a yuck-filled screamfest which generates far more mirth than tension, gobs of gore served up onscreen notwithstanding. For, never do you get the sense that the picture’s motley crew might not survive their harrowing ordeal.

Instead, you tend to focus on the comical, creative variety of ways in which they dispatch the swarming hordes of carnivorous creatures, and on the budding romance between Columbus and Wichita. The film also features a hilarious cameo by Bill Murray, who plays himself with his typically-blasé aplomb.

Zombies as good clean fun, I mean, good messy fun!

Very Good (3 stars)
Rated PG R for profanity and gory violence.
Running time: 87 minutes
Studio: Columbia Pictures

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