Monday, October 26, 2009

Zombieland (2009) – Review

Zombieland is like a rollercoaster at the fair, fun, if not exciting, the first go round, but likely dull upon revisit. The premise, much like every other zombie movie, is people running away from, killing, trying to survive zombies – pretty straight forward – but this film has a twist, or so it would seem, maybe more like a new perspective on the zombie movie, which is comedy (comedy through somewhat tired jokes, a sarcastic yet sweet V.O., slow motion, and captions) – only the comedy twist has been done before and better (see Shaun of the Dead).  Take away the zombies, and the film is about a young adult (doing his best Michael Cera impersonation at times) finding a family – family coming together from a ragtag group that grows to love and depend on each other along the journey (not exactly new terrain). However, even with the film being a rehashing of fairly played out ideas, it is still fun and enjoyable upon the first ride – there are thrills and spills (and gore, it is a zombie movie after all). Director Ruben Fleischer, making his feature debut, shoots the film in a more or less straight forward manner, using more slow-mo than Michael Bay in the process. He gets what he needs and moves on, a style that has worked well for Brett Ratner and will likely get him future gigs, there is not much art, but in an adequately superficial film, that is fine. The cast works well in their roles, with great expectation reversal bit parts involving Amber Heard and Bill Murray.  It is nice to see Abigail Breslin take a break from kids’ movies and get back into another R comedy; she has a lot of potential. From a technical aspect, like the directing, the film is cut and dry, but again, it did not need to be anything more – the film is about spectacle, not artistic expression. The soundtrack works well in fitting with the motif of the film, and the references to Ghost Busters (indeed) are pretty awesome and fun. All in all, Zombieland is a fun movie experience, more so for some than others, for this type of movie, a viewer sort of has to be in its intended audience to fully enjoy it, though do not expect the fun to thrill upon repeat go rounds. 6/10

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