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This movie was 'bloody' well done...no pun intended. I went into this
film not knowing really what to expect but maybe a dark comedy which is
why I came out very happy. While I was right about it being funny, it's
also an excellent zombie film going on in the meantime. Believe it or
not there weren't as many comical moments as I thought there was going
to be but some instances were just downright hilarious. The acting was
superb and I could tell it must've been an extreme challenge for them
since they'd have to go from comedic to dramatic to tragic in what was
sometimes probably only a matter of seconds. I definitely gave a big
thumbs up to the cast after I noticed this. Even with the apparent
low-budget I think the zombie's were effective and looked just as real
as in most other movies. Overall a great movie and I highly recommend
it to take your mind of life's boring subtleties.
Movies: Worth every cent of the ticket price.
DVD Purchase: Yes, there is a very good chance this might be the start of a series.
Rental: If by no other means then absolutely!
"Shaun Of The Dead" is far beyond what one might expect, a typical British comedy laden with outlandish, quirky dialogue and scenario; it's outlandish, outrageous, and absolutely insane working unconventionally as both a satisfying comedy and a gruesome blood fest. It will probably go down as an instant cult classic, offering pokes-a-plenty at a drug-induced, conscience-weary society (enter Shaun, who seems oblivious and impervious to the gory catastrophe which has yet to even affect his daily routine until (one of them) threatens to take over his body), along with today's obsession with "kill and destroy" everything which budges in one's path (kill the zombies before they can harm us). The dialogue itself is laden with standard, vivacious British humor and substance ("I love my mum!"; "There's no "I" in team, but there's "I" in pie"), and as an American ashamed to admit I have hardly explored this British culture, I found the dialogue original, convivial and refreshing; only in a British comedy can decapitating zombies seem so fun and hilarious! Aside from constantly shelling out some appreciated humor, the film is indeed a disgusting gore-fest, so be warned, those who dispose at the mention of "blood and guts": this is probably not your movie. Of course, the premise is rhetorically reminiscent of "Dawn of the Dead", strictly a horror film, and this film makes light and dread on the "town takeover of the zombies" premise in such a clever, if excessive and obscene, execution. Towards the end, the comedy premise sort of wanes away and the story deviates in various other tones: drama (mother-son bonds), romance (Shaun and Liz inseparable), and horror (the violence at times becomes overwhelming and we lament the characters' apparent doom). Perhaps this constructive deviation is less appreciated than if the film would have retained its initial premise of silly, obscene, grotesque comedy. The ending is routine, if over-the-top, but then again, how else would one expect a zany film as this to conclude? Its silly, fresh (if obscene) hilarious premise collaborating with the "zombie invasion" premise, makes "Shaun of the Dead" one insane, droll, and zany British comedy, sure to be an international "guilty pleasure" hit! *** out of ****
This is one of those ideas that is so obvious you end up hitting your
head, wondering why you didn't think of it yourself: combine 28 DAYS
with the British genre that's most famous nowadays, "overgrown
adolescents learn to accept responsibility and get lives". In England,
Shaun and his going-nowhere best friend are living lives of quiet
desperation, until his girlfriend dumping him and, incidentally, a
zombie uprising, causes Shaun to get a clue.
I really liked this. This is almost a perfect blend of humor and seriousness: some people have knocked the film for this but I think it's just right, so much so that I actually got a little misty-eyed toward the end of the movie, and I can't say I've done that with any other release this year. Particularly funny is Shaun's early cluelessness during the outbreak.
The movie does post-modernism proud, as it's both a play on genre conventions and a celebration of them: this is an extremely tough thing to pull off, but they manage to do it with style. Because it's mainly a riff on established conventions, not something unique, the movie does suffer from a certain diffuseness: early on it looks like the theme will be "modern society creates zombies by itself" ala DAWN OF THE DEAD, but that soon gets abandoned, for instance, as there's too much other stuff to refer to. Still, the characters believe in what they're doing absolutely, which helps a lot in these sorts of things. Jokes aren't funny if the deliver is sniggering as he delivers them.
This is the sort of thing KILL BILL was trying to do: I liked those movies but they never really congealed into more than the sum of their parts, the way this did. SHAUN OF THE DEAD is essentially a goof, an inside joke (in some ways the definition of post modernism) but it's a very good example of it. Highly recommended.
The cast attracted me to this DVD. Simon Pegg and Lucy Davis in
particular were the names that shone from the DVD case. When I read the
other cast names, I knew this was going to be something special.
And it didn't disappoint. The cast is fabulous. The direction is great and is a clever blend of UK blandness and comedy genius. Residents of the UK will recognise so many of the cast members but those outside of the country will still appreciate their abilities.
Zombie movies in the past have been numerous and predictable and Shaun Of The Dead is still very predictable. This is a good thing - I found myself looking thirty seconds into the future and I was usually correct. Not a bad thing though - it almost immersed me into the film.
My biggest criticism is that this whole movie could have been (and maybe should have been) shortened into something like an hour special. There are a few scenes (additional to those included on the DVD extras) that I felt could have been excluded. When you see the deleted scenes you realize the reasons why they were deleted, but also pick out other scenes that probably should have been left out too.
The story was always going to be pretty basic. The characters are great and they all have their particular relevance in the film. The seamless inclusion of Sky News footage of the outside world is great and is a brilliant touch and adds more UK-ness to the whole thing. Without it, the movie would have been missing something. American disaster movies always try to insert CNN footage to intensify the effect and Sky is the obvious UK alternative.
The reasons behind the zombie infestation is never revealed and I like that. It would have made the plot far more complex. It didn't really matter while I was watching the movie why these zombies had appeared and the characters didn't really dwell on it either - it was always about survival.
It's a great Saturday night post-pub movie that requires you to turn off your brain and switch it to funny mode. It's funnier if you are British because of the music references and a few of the actors, but it's still completely universal (no pun intended). Never take it seriously.
I enjoyed it. I'm giving it a seven out of ten. It's missing more points because I found a few scenes particularly unnecessary which makes me think that it could have been shortened to an hour for a TV special rather than a feature film, but I'm glad that Simon Pegg is attempting these projects and have always enjoyed his material. Everyone involved in this movie is destined for more, so remember their names.
Shaun of the Dead. Oh, isn't it great? Well, if you haven't taken a
shortcut before, SOTD is a British romantic comedy with zombies, or a
zom-rom-com. So, kill your stepfather, and bring your friends, mum, ex
and her friends to the Winchester, have a nice pint of beer, and wait
for this review to blow over.
Our story begins with hero... sorry, I mean, broke salesman Shaun, as he has to go to work, and stops at the shop for a drink. He breaks up with his girlfriend, gets drunk with best friend Ed, and the next day, heads to the shop to buy a drink and a Cornetto. However, there appears to be... something wrong with the streets on London, but Shaun doesn't notice. Back home, he turns on the news to find panic on the streets of London, as reports state people literally being eaten alive. With the attackers, who are dead excited. However, complications arise, they make a plan, take some shortcuts, and they're at the Winchester. I'll stop to avoid spoilers.
A great film! Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright have made a great film. On your first watch, just sit back and enjoy the show. On many other watches, look in the background for other jokes, including The Who zombies! George Romero's opinions even state this as a great film. It got cameos from Pegg and Wright in Land of the Dead as zombies.
A must watch comedy: With high reviews and great expectations. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm dead excited for my date at the Winchester, but first, to wash my shirt. There's red on it.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Taking a satire and turning it into a real movie takes an incredible
amount of talent, all-around. Sure, everyone, including me, loves Simon
Pegg and his (best) boyfriend, Nick Frost, and they get huge credit, on
screen, in turning Dawn of the Dead's spoof Shaun of the Dead into a
raging success, even by today's standards. But, it was mainly the
writing by both Pegg and (also, Director) Edgar Wright.
I used to be a huge spoof fan, until 2000's Scary Movie, one of my all-time favorite comedies, put an end to actual funny spoofs. Four years later, unbeknownst by me, came Shaun of the Dead, another great parody. I didn't know about it because it fell far under my radar and I probably didn't see this the first time until 5-6 years later. Just recently, (8/31/13) I watched it for the second time.
I am fully aware this lands on a ton of people's top list, and I truly liked it, myself, but I wouldn't go as far to land it in my top whatever list. Okay, maybe spoofs, since there's so few really good ones, but that's about it.
My only real problem is the movie runs out of breath in the last act. Gore replaced comedy in the last third and yeah, it's to remind us this is *also* a zombie movie. But, to me, it felt more like they ran out of jokes and lost focus on what the first two-thirds were all about.
That said, the first two acts were fantastic. Absolutely hilarious and ingenious use of both comedy and the zombie genre, all with deadpan deliveries. Basically, Shaun (Pegg) lives the same droll life and this is affecting his relationship with his girlfriend, but not so much his (best) boyfriend, Ed (Frost.) Unfortunately, for the threesome eh, maybe also the world, a zombie outbreak occurs and, not coincidentally, mirrors Shaun's existence.
There were many opportunities to exploit the potential humor in a zombie outbreak film, and I doubt writers Pegg and Wright missed a single one. Leading up to our heroes finding out what's going on, and a little beyond the acknowledgment, it was one hilarious scene following the next. Mercifully, they chose the (much preferred by me) slow-moving zombies in order to give the cast a lot more time to give us more entertainment.
If you haven't yet seen this, and are a fan of zombie films, or even dislike them and would like to see them ridiculed, this is your movie. It is also the teaming of Pegg and Frost's absolute best film, even though they would make a couple more enjoyable flicks.
Gotta love lines like: "We're coming to get you, Barbara!" Ed.
My son made me watch this camp take-off, and I'm glad he did.
A wonderfully funny homage to George Romero, its got more zombies, blood, and gore than any movie I've ever seen. Though thin on plot, it's a well written and well directed film, more than could be said for any of Romero's films. Great cinematography with long traveling shots, well developed characters (and I do mean characters) and a very subtle build up to the introduction to the first Zombies (though we all know its coming).
If you are looking for some good, bloody fun and are a fan of camp, check out Shaun of the dead.
WOW I LOVE THIS FILM!!! Best zombie flick EVER!!! Beats Resident Evil by far. It made me laugh so much and sometimes made me jump:P I didn't know who on earth Simon Pegg was before I saw this but after watching this I made it my business to find out more. Now I know tons about him... This movie is full of great actors/actresses like Simon Pegg,Nick Frost, Dylan Moran and many others!!! The soundtrack fits too ... 'Dont stop me now, I'm having such a good time' as Shaun goes to work with a cricket bat! I got the DVD for my birthday and watch it all the time! I've passed it around my mates to watch and they love it too. There should be more British comedy films like this one.
At last a successful British Comedy that doesn't involve upper middle
class people falling in and out of love (see love actually, Bridgette
Jones, 4 weddings etc.) The film is manic and a little surreal in
places but thrown in are some slower dramatic moments which compliment
the comedy superbly.
It is pretty much what it says on the poster a romantic comedy with zombies, there are some nice touches that comment on the modern style of living. The laughs come thick and fast top scene goes to a memorable zombie death by vinyl LP's. A class act we can only hope they'll team up again for another film, with them all being big star wars fans who knows Darth Vader as a zombie anyone?
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
SPOILERS Zombie films are the corner stone of so many childhoods.
Constantly terrifying children since George Romero's 1968 classic
"Night Of The Living Dead", the notion has experienced a bit of a
revival in recent years. Like so many different topics though, it's
always been a curiosity how the rest of the world would cope other than
America. In wonderful spoof "Shaun of the Dead" we finally learn how
your every day Brit deals with the impending threat of the walking
Shaun (Simon Pegg) is a hopeless 29 year old who works at an electronics store, spends all his time in the pub and has just been dumped by his girlfriend. Now, just when things feel like they can't get any worse, the dead are walking.
A masterful idea, the entire notion of "Shaun of the Dead" is pure genius. Transplanting the story of zombies to a typical London flat and it's occupants, there are so many potential ideas and it never ceases to exploit them. Whether BBC Coverage, T4, playing on the Playstation or pub fruit machines, the film is wonderful at poking fun at countless different aspects of the British lifestyle.
Led by a solid performance by main star Pegg, the film has the cream of modern British comedy involved with it. With Dylan Moran, Martin Freeman, Lucy Davis, Jessica Stevenson and countless others, the film's casting is perfect.
There are so many quality lines in this film too, there are times you find yourself laughing at the most random of times. Then again though, this is what you want for comedy.
All in all, "Shaun of the Dead" is amazing. Starring a solid cast and with some classic lines, this film is a brilliant portrayal of how your typical Brit would deal with a zombie threat. A wonderful idea which is played out superbly. Well worth a watch.
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