7.9/10
507,853
995 user 272 critic

Shaun of the Dead (2004)

A man's uneventful life is disrupted by the zombie apocalypse.

Director:

Edgar Wright
Reviews
Popularity
1,009 ( 503)
13 wins & 20 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Simon Pegg ... Shaun
Kate Ashfield ... Liz
Nick Frost ... Ed
Lucy Davis ... Dianne
Dylan Moran ... David
Nicola Cunningham Nicola Cunningham ... Mary
Keir Mills ... Clubber 1 (as Kier Mills)
Matt Jaynes Matt Jaynes ... Clubber 2
Gavin Ferguson Gavin Ferguson ... Football Kid
Peter Serafinowicz ... Pete
Horton Jupiter Horton Jupiter ... Homeless Man
Tim Baggaley Tim Baggaley ... The Usher
Arvind Doshi Arvind Doshi ... Nelson
Rafe Spall ... Noel
Sonnell Dadral Sonnell Dadral ... Danny (as Sonell Dadral)
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Storyline

Shaun (Simon Pegg) doesn't have a very good day, so he decides to turn his life around by getting his ex to take him back, but he times it for right in the middle of what may be a zombie apocalypse. But for him, it's an opportunity to show everyone he knows how useful he is by saving them all. All he has to do is survive, and get his ex back. Written by Infest0125

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In a time of crisis a hero must rise...from his sofa. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for zombie violence/gore and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

All of the newsreaders and television presenters are real people portraying themselves. See more »

Goofs

When the 'Groom Zombie' enters Shaun, Ed and Pete's home you can see positioning markers on the floor in Shaun and Ed's reaction shot. Look to the lower right of the screen and you'll see at least two markers in blue tape on the floor. These are for continuity and should not be visible in the final cut. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
John: Last orders, please!
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Crazy Credits

The credits end with the incidental Mall Muzak from Dawn of the Dead (1978). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sean Bradley Reviews: Baby Driver (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

The Gonk (Kid Koala Remix)
Written by Herbert Chappell (as Chappell)
Performed by The Noveltones
Additional Production and Remix by Kid Koala
Courtesy of De Wolfe Limited/Ninja Tune
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User Reviews

Flesh-eating fun for all the family
15 April 2004 | by tjcclarkeSee all my reviews

The great British sit-com has undergone something of a revival in recent years. Galvanised by the new wave of smart, sassy imports from the US, the Brits have girded their loins and produced a spate of quality comedies that have banished memories of the bland, identikit dross of the late eighties and early nineties.

One such series is Spaced, a wholly original and delightfully quirky comic bagatelle which has built up a small but dedicated following in the UK. Now writer/actor Simon Pegg and director Edgar Wright have teamed up once again to give us Shaun of the Dead which is, in a nutshell, a feature-length episode of Spaced (with added zombies). Happily timed to coincide with the Hollywood remake of the 1978 classic shocker Dawn of the Dead, Shaun is the perfect antidote: Irreverent, warm and very funny.

Shaun (Pegg) is your stereotypical sit-com loser: An ineffectual slob in a dead-end job, he is terminally afraid of commitment and spends all his time with his flat-mate Ed (Nick Frost, also from Spaced) who is an even bigger loser. After his girlfriend dumps him, Shaun and Ed seek solace in their local pub the Winchester - a good old-fashioned English hostelry with warm beer and pork scratchings which is infamous for its lock-ins. They stagger home in a state of advanced refreshment, unaware that the dead are now walking the earth. Indeed, it takes Shaun a little while to work it out the following morning despite interacting with a few of them (one of the recurring themes is that most of us go through the drudgery of our daily routines in a trance close to inertia).

When the penny drops, Shaun resolves to rescue his mother and his (ex) girlfriend and generally stand up for himself for the first time in his life. There is not much more of a plot than that. The film, like Spaced relies on a flawless script, observational humour and the theatre of the absurd. Pegg has perfected this in his writing but he is also a surprisingly good actor. It helps that he has surrounded himself with the pick of the British comedy fraternity who seem to have been lining up (literally in one scene) for a cameo. The stars of similarly acclaimed series' such as Black Books, The Office and Little Britain are all on show here as well as Jessica Stevenson, Pegg's Spaced co-writer, who plays a jolly-hockey-sticks human vigilante with a stiff-upper lip and can-do attitude ready to give those nasty zombie's what-for.

Veteran support comes from Penelope Wilton (a sit-com stalwart from a bygone age) as Shaun's curtain-twitching mother and Bill Nighy as her fearsome second husband who performs one of the most dignified and poignant descents into zombieness ever caught on camera.

Despite all the high praise, it must be acknowledged that Shaun of the Dead is still a spoof - a comic tool that you could argue is as low a form of wit as sarcasm. But where it scores highly is in its respect for the original material. Most spoofs (the Scary Movie franchise, for example) are vicious lampoons that unmercifully mock the films they are taking off. Shaun of the Dead gently pokes fun but doesn't lose sight of the fact that if something is worth parodying, it must have some merit. Pegg is also careful to ensure that his film can stand up on its own - there is barely a minute goes by without a very good joke and despite the light-heartedness, there are some satisfyingly scary moments and ample gore.

What is most encouraging is that us Brits have started playing to our strengths. It took a long time for comedy writers to realise that making an English version of Friends is doomed to failure (in the same way that The Office will not work with an American make-over). We should celebrate the Britishness of this film, laugh knowingly at the in gags, and be proud that it doesn't take a huge budget or movie stars to entertain people at the cinema.

8/10


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK | France | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 September 2004 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Shaun of the Dead See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

GBP4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,300,000, 26 September 2004

Gross USA:

$13,542,874

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$30,097,092
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital EX | DTS-ES | DTS (DTS: X)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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