Movie Review - Zombieland
Being chased by rabid and infectious zombies seems to be a fantastic recipe for a mindless, linear, and horrifying movie. But instead, you have “Zombieland”, a mindless, linear, horrifying and (mostly) hilarious movie. Yes, you heard me – hilarious!!(“shaun of the dead” comes to mind) This is not to say that the movie is the next candidate for Best Motion Picture award, but it does successfully mix all possible emotions – funny, scary, sad, romance – all in one movie (a feat not many a director can emulate).
The movie revolves around 4 unlikely strangers whose path was inadvertently crossed, when the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave, becomes the land of zombies (hence the title Zombieland) .The cast consists of some pretty big names (Woody Harrelson) and some little big names (Abigail Breslin from Little Miss Sunshine) and a cameo appearance by Bill Murray who plays himself in a fictional-reality scene whereby his 80’s glory days of ghost-busting is teasingly reanimated in this movie.
It does however, contain the shallowest possible plot (you can’t expect much considering it’s a zombie movie to begin with) however, what’s good is that it doesn’t attempt to put in a whole load of pretentious artistic crap about morality of journalism, or corporate evil bent at making state-of-the-art soldiers, which end up making mindless flesh eating freaks. No, Zombieland would have none of these. The story does get a little aimless at the beginning, and when it does pick up some sense of goal, it’s an oh-so-tired tale of search and rescue operation.
What it lacks in storyline it makes up for in creative presentation, with its first-party narration intertwined with pop-up words appearing all around the movie, makes it unique, even for ridiculous comedies (parody films included). You also get a rude shocking scare here and there (although not a lot) the novelty of zombies springing up on you does tend to get lame if consumed to much in a seating, therefore, the editors do present it in just the right amount of dosage.
If one were to go on further beyond the façade of mindless screams and laughter, one will appreciate that in real life, most people do shun themselves from the public and live an isolated life treating all others like, well, zombies. This is certainly portrayed well by Jesse Eisenberg who is an anti social and live by a set of rules (which ultimately becomes his key to survival) therefore, being able to adapt to life in the absence of civilization. Woody Harrelson does punch in some good acting although you could say, he would have done far better in a more civilized movie. The same though, can’t be said for the rest of the artiste, with only half convincing performance by Bill Murray although you could sense that it was intentional (for whatever reasons that fail me)
Zombieland may not be suitable for children (Blood, gore, excessive violence and full frontal female zombie running in slo-mo). Adults, watch it only if there is nothing else to watch, or unless you do appreciate dark humor or a rather cynical view on life (it does give us life lessons that people will screw you no matter how much you’ve helped them). Release date for KK may be on 10/12/09. If you want to watch it now, popular P2P networks share clear version although it may not be worth your download time (with such ridiculously slow “broadband” connection), but it is certainly worth RM10 for 3 piece of pirated DVD. We don’t condone stealing intellectual property, but with Sabah’s GDP per capita the lowest in the nation*, we can understand if you have to :-)
Special Effects: 3/5
Photos Courtesy of cinemaonline.com.my and zombieland.com
*The Expat Welcome Guide 2009 pg.67, ids.gov.my