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Very Pleasant Surprise...
drono228 September 2009
Just came from a sneak preview held in Baltimore and left the theater feeling very satisfied. You don't normally find a late September movie as good as "Zombieland" was. After dropping you in the action right from the start, the movie keeps coming with constant laughs and good action. There were not a lot of scares in the movie, other than the few obvious scenes where you could see one coming, but horror is not what the director was going for in this film. Laughs, however, come often and from many different directions. Jessie Eisenberg's nerdy, insecure 'Columbus' character and Woody Harrelson's redneck zombie-killing 'Tallahassee' play very well off each other and provide plenty of memorable moments. Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin are also solid throughout. There is also one unforgettable cameo that had most of the audience rolling in the aisles. The film has a simple, easy to follow storyline that does not provoke a lot of questions. Indeed, if you go to this movie expecting a lot of plot twists and surprises, you're going to be severely disappointed. There is however, good action, good laughs, and plenty of zombie related gore. At about 90 minutes long, it does not drag on and gets to the predictable but satisfying ending, going out in style. There will no doubt be a lot of comparisons to "Shaun of the Dead", which is nothing to be ashamed of, but this is truly a one of a kind movie experience that holds its own with any not only any zombie movie in recent memory, but with any comedy so far this year. As long as you don't go into this movie expecting too much, you'll get your money's worth. Well done.
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Hop onto this drop tower ride n be ready for ur giggle to turn into a guffaw, tensing ur diaphragm n thereby gaining a solid ab workout.
Fella_shibby26 December 2019
First saw this in 2010 on a dvd which i own. Revisited it recently. As a fan of Woody Harrelson, I enjoyed this even more. The film follows four fellas making their way through the zombie apocalypse on a road trip. While one fella has a set of rules to survive, another has a craving for Twinkies and stops to acquire some even with the threat of zombies roaming the countryside. The list of rules, especially cardio, for surviving in the zombie-infested world, a clown-zombie n the drop tower ride, r all uniquely the highlight.
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Will undoubtedly become a cult classic
Apemangalore3 October 2009
Arguably one of the finest horror comedies of all time is Edgar Wright's Shaun of the Dead, and since its release in '04, there have been a good number of wannabes. Based on the trailers for Zombieland, however, I thought that the film had some serious potential to match Shaun in terms of quality, possibly even usurp it. Having seen the film, I'm happy to say that Zombieland does just that.

Unlike many comedies in recent memory, in which the majority of laughs are already provided by the trailer, Zombieland is filled to the brim with laugh-out-loud moments, thanks largely to the brilliant cast. Eisenberg is awesome as the main protagonist, Columbus, portraying that sense of vulnerability and awkwardness, without becoming too Michael Cera-like. Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin are also terrific as the sweet, yet tough Wichita and the more-mature-than-she-seems Little Rock, respectively.

The real stand-out performance, though, is Woody Harrelson as the Twinkie-lovin', zombie-hatin' Tallahassee. Next to that of Woody Boyd on Cheers and Frasier, this is definitely the best performance of his career. There's also a painfully hilarious cameo appearance about mid-way through the film that would be a crime to spoil. Suffice it to say, this is – hands-down – the best cameo that I've ever seen in a film.

The most surprising aspect of Zombieland, to me, is how much heart there is. All of the characters feel warm and alive, and what drama there is to be found feels extremely sincere. Ultimately, you feel invested in the story and the characters, which – I think – is the most important thing any film of any genre can do.

Zombieland has instantly become a horror favorite of mine (comedic or otherwise). The – for the lack of a better word – quotable dialogue, consistently hysterical tone, and endearing characters, all come together to create a film that will undoubtedly become a cult classic.
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Hilarious Dialogue, Fun Visuals and Some Breakout Performances, It's One Of My Favourite Movies
CANpatbuck36645 April 2016
Warning: Spoilers
After Batman v Superman I wanted to go back and watch a movie where I was impressed with Jesse Eisenberg. Zombieland is one of my favourites, so it was an easy choice. They continue to talk about a Zombieland sequel today even though it's been years since the original has been released. I'd like to think that's how big of an impact it made (it was a box office success but it didn't go over like gangbusters). It's probably too late for a sequel with the entire cast moving on and becoming industry headliners, but it's okay though because we'll always have this one.

*Minor Spoilers Ahead* Our main character is Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg), since no one uses their real names in Zombieland. We get a brief window into the world as it is now, completely invaded by zombies. Columbus takes us through some of his rules on how he survived like #1 cardio, #2 double tap, #3 beware of bathrooms and #4 seat belts. We then join him in present day in Garland, Texas and he makes his escape utilizing those same rules (he's far from a zombie killing bad-ass though, he mostly succeeds through discipline and some luck). He reveals that he's trying to get back to Ohio to see his family. The odds aren't in his favour though, most of the world has been wiped out. He reveals that he's always been a loner but he actually misses seeing people around. Someone then rolls up in a Cadillac Escalade with a large number 3 painted on the side. The draw their guns on each other but Columbus holds out his thumb and Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson) offers him a ride. They clearly don't gel personality wise with Tallahassee being more of an unhinged zombie killing machine and Columbus is a nervous and cautious kind of guy. But they decide to stick together at least for the time being.

Most zombie related programming is horror related. Zombieland is less a horror film and more of a dark action comedy. One of the things that makes it so memorable is that it's so funny. It was written by the co-writers of Deadpool (another excellent dark action comedy) and although the actors/actresses bring so much to the movie, one of the biggest stars is the actual script itself. We see the movie through Columbus' eyes as he travels around with 3 bad-ass zombie killers and his interpretation of the events in the movie is so ridiculous by contrast, it's hilarious. Between the action and the comedy, the movie rarely slows down if at all and with a short run time, it doesn't overstay it's welcome either. There's nothing wrong with a movie being long if it has enough material but there's something to be said for accomplishing what you want to get done and leaving before people get tired of it.

Looking at the 4 main characters of the cast, you'll easily recognize them as almost all of them populate the A list. At this time Jesse and Emma were both up and coming talents and this movie helped cement them. Jesse really stepped out of Michael Cera's shadow with a great comedic performance and Emma showed that how multi-talented she can be. She was really funny in Zombieland and she hit the more serious notes as well. This was a good movie for Abigail Breslin to do. It helped her transition out of being a child star and while she was still a kid in this film, she more than held her own. Lastly, Woody was already famous so while I can't credit his success to this movie, this is easily the funniest I've ever seen him be in a movie. In an era of the Walking Dead where you have completely serious zombie killers, his character was more laid back and enjoyed channelling his internal pain into brutally killing the undead. Woody makes his character somebody you want to follow and it's always fun to see how he's going to deal with the zombies in the next scene (whether he's swinging a banjo or using hedge clippers).

One of the really unique things this movie brings is that it was made relatively cheap but it's got some really cool visual tricks. Things like the actually lettering for Columbus' rules popping up and interacting with the environment like the letters moving when limber up appears. It's not completely new but they use it so well. The action is hard and brutal, they also find ways to get some interesting shots (there's lots of slow motion and they work the comedy into the action pretty organically). The zombies look disgusting (in a good way) and they found a way to put a different spin on them. It's not on the level of a movie that had 100s of millions in its budget but it's still well done and it could easily pass for having twice the budget it did.

I've watched this movie many times over and it is still super entertaining every time I put it on. It wouldn't be in my top 10 all time but it wouldn't be far outside it. It delivers on all fronts and it's like I said in the opening, if we ultimately don't get the sequel that's okay, I'll enjoy the perfectly wrapped gift this movie is.
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Brilliantly crafted with laughs from beginning to end
jaypugh21 September 2009
I caught a sneak preview of Zombieland with a friend and was impressed to say the least.

Zombieland has to have one of the flashiest openings in memory. There is no subtle build up. You are dropped right into Zombieland as Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) begins listing the rules to survival. Of course each rule gives you a hysterical example of why the rule is in place. Anything that has been taboo for horror films at one time is met head on. I won't list each as not to spoil the movie but Zombieland has a unique ability to make almost anything seem comical. This includes the fact that for some reason it seems that every zombie in Zombieland has a blood belching problem. Literally every zombie has blood spewing from their mouth. This is captured best in the intro as you almost feel like you are supposed to have the 3D glasses in place.

Columbus is funny enough with his phobias and geek lifestyle that proves to be what keeps him alive but it isn't until he meets Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), that things really kick into gear. Harrelson seems to have been born for this role. He has more one liners than any character in recent memory. Each line is typically vulgar but even if offensive it is near impossible not to laugh. Let's face it, if you are completely offended by language or blood then you aren't likely to be sitting with a crowd watching Zombieland in the first place.

A little romance is thrown into the mix when Columbus and Tallahassee come up on Wichita (Emma Stone) and Little Rock (Abigail Breslin). For a zombie comedy I thought Eisenberg and Stone actually had decent chemistry. Not that much time is dedicated to romance but what is there comes across as sincere and lets us watch as Columbus transitions from geek to hero. Even without the romance the girls are an important part of the chemistry of Zombieland. They help to even out the brawn and the brains between the four characters.

Zombieland has a simple story. The guys are loners. Columbus with the simple mission to stay alive and Tallahassee with a never ending search for any and all of the remaining golden Twinkies left on the planet. The girls are sisters who are trying to get to an amusement park in CA where they believe, or at least want to believe it is zombie free. A small part of the film feels like the movie Vacation with zombies. The comical trip with a destination which you can just feel isn't going to be what the characters hope for. Like Vacation it shows that the journey is far more important than the destination.

The biggest moment of the film has to be the mystery cameo. I'm glad I didn't know who it was and I won't spoil it for anyone else. I will say that it was brilliantly written into the script. PERFECT! It really goes to show how much they focused on getting Zombieland to be a top notch flick that should go down as a horror-comedy classic to remember. It will certainly fit alongside Shaun of the Dead in my movie collection.
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Actually quite fun
akerdan10 September 2009
I just was exiting the theater after seeing '9', which is also worth a look, when my friend and I were offered tickets to a preview screening of Zombieland, which began almost immediately. I had seen previews for this picture, but I'd say this exceeded my expectations, which isn't to say masterpiece, but it was certainly entertaining, and at about 90 minutes, didn't really overstay it's welcome.

As you might expect for this genre, it's quite gory, so don't go expecting a light 'R' rating. But if you can handle some bloodshed, no, make that a substantial amount of bloodshed - but perhaps I should add in a comic environment - there's some pretty funny stuff here. Woody Harreleson and Jesse Eisenberg make an amusing odd couple and Emma Stone was fine for this material, although she and Abigale Breslin had slightly less to do.

I'm certainly no expert on the horror genre or the zombie sub-genre, but I can say that this wasn't as scary as Shaun of the Dead, in fact not very scary at all, I may have jumped back just a tiny bit a few times; however I may have laughed more. However I'm sure it does make a difference that I saw 'Shaun' alone on DVD, while 'Zombieland' I watched in a theater full of people laughing, clapping and cheering.

Let's face it, you know what's going to happen in this flick, but I'm happy to say, plot conventions and all, this delivers enough laughs so if you know what you're getting into I doubt you'll regret laying down the price of admission for this sucker. Should you see it, see it opening night - if I haven't made it clear enough already, this is the kind of movie where the more enthusiastic people in the theater, the more fun it will be. And to end on a very positive note, 'Zombieland' does feature what just might go down in history as the best celebrity cameo of all time.
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Visually stylish & polished - Easily the most laughs I've had at the movies in a long time.
Cinemadharma6 October 2009
The name Zombieland conjures up a vision of a zombie-themed amusement park -- and that's exactly what this film is. Visually stylish and the most laughs I've had at the movies in a long time. A really solid script and nice underlying story really helps make this so much more than just a bunch of awesome zombie kills. That being said, this film feels as if you're playing a really badass zombie killing video game.

Thanks to 'Natural Born Killers', Woody Harrelson has just the right cult status and persona for this type of film, which is intended to pay homage to the great zombie 'B' movies of yesteryear, but really is a great zombie 'A' movie with today's style & sensibility. Jesse Eisenberg (who has a certain Michael Cera shyness/eccentricity to his delivery, but doesn't seem nearly as pathetic as Cera's characters often come off) carries the film well. And of course, everyone is talking about the film's 'secret' cameo, and rightly so. It is absolutely the best and most fun part of an already awesomely fun film -- and it kept me laughing almost non-stop throughout that 10-15 minute section of the movie.

This is a zombie-comedy that deserves to take it's place amongst the best of the genre, 'Shaun of the Dead' and 'Army of Darkness'. In fact, what I wouldn't give to see a triple feature of these films at a drive-in theater on Halloween... the perfect place and time for a zombie feeding.
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Rule #17: Don't Be A Hero!!
GirishGowda4 April 2010
Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) is a regular boy with regular gaming addiction, but has serious people phobia & never had any friends in his life & is afraid most of the times. One day, due to the spread of an incurable virus, the whole of USA is over-run by zombies. He wants to see his parents in Columbus & during his journey meets up with Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson) who loves to kill zombies. They are conned by a pair of sisters Wichita (Emma Stone) & Little Rock (Abigail Breslin). All of them become friends over their crazy journey across America.

I seriously loved this film. The comedy is great, we care about the characters, the zombies are gross & the dialogues are seriously cool. This became one of my favourite comedy films of all time, as the character development is strong & there are laughs all the way through. This film has something which lots of films in this genre are missing, it has heart. The characters are warm & the little drama it has is very sincere.

The standout performance comes from Woody Harrelson who is Twinkie loving and zombie hating. Jesse Eisenberg is really maturing as an actor. His latest films have all been good. And his rules, God The Rules, that was so much fun. Abigail Breslin plays yet again the girl-who's-mature-way-beyond-her-age. It may sound boring, but trust me it is anything but that. Emma Stone as Wichita, I loved her. All the characters were endearing to me.

This will undoubtedly become a cult classic, much in the same way as 'Shaun Of The Dead'. A zombie comedy that's this good has taken too long to come after Shaun of the Dead. But it is definitely worth the wait:)

9/10 -Girish,20
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Zombieland is a horror comedy at its best
the-movie-guy2 October 2009
(Synopsis) The entire world is hit with an apocalyptic infection that turns people into zombies once they have been bitten by an infected zombie. Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) is a young geek who has a lot of phobias about almost everything from clowns, to bathrooms, to checking the back seat of cars. Being alone and scared of the outside world has kept him alive. His new fear is being eaten by zombies. To survive, Columbus has begun making a long list of rules to survive. Each time he gives you one of his rules, you see an example of his rule in action. He decides to go home to Columbus to see if his parents are still alive. Along the highway, he meets Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson) a redneck zombie killer who loves Twinkies. They team up and head for Tallahassee. On the way they meet and join forces with two girls, Wichita (Emma Stone) and Little Rock (Abagail Breslin). They may be the last surviving people on earth, and they must rely on each other to survive.

(My Comment) Zombieland is a horror comedy at its best. You usually don't see a zombie movie as a comedy, but you will like this one. Actually this isn't really a comedy; it is more a funny horror movie, because there is bloodshed in a comic situation. There is plenty of blood splattering, plenty of killing and gore, and even some nudity of a stripper zombie. The film delivers you four heroes that you can root for when the zombies come after them. You will begin to love the scenes with the rules of survival that Jesse Eisenberg explains to the audience in a background voice such as wearing your seat-belt, or the double-tap rule after you shoot a zombie make sure he is dead by shooting him in the head again. Trust me; this is not a wasted shot. Woody Harrelson's performance is terrific, as a redneck zombie killer who misses his puppy Buck, and must find a Twinkie at any cost. There is one unforgettable cameo appearance that will take place at someone's Beverly Hills mansion. I won't say his name, but it is hilarious. There is one thing that I must say about this zombie movie that is not normally in zombie movies, and that is the fact that once these zombies are infected they can run very fast. As a matter of fact that is rule number 1, be sure that you can outrun the zombies, because the overweight and slow people were caught first by the zombies. There are some pretty funny scenes, and you will laugh from beginning to end. (Columbia Pictures, Run Time 1:20, Rated R)(7/10)
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America's answer to Shaun of the Dead.
KillerK199123 September 2009
This film was a fun ride all the way through. It's lack of scariness(non existent) and *GASP!* gore is more than made up for with the constant flow of hilarity and likable characters. This is by far the optimist's zombie film, as the way things play out are definitely different than any one thats come before it(definitely not a Romero flick, though I think his Land of the Dead actually is second place in this regard). It has a sleek, very modern sense of style-just watch for how each rule makes it's appearance/reappearance and a good message on the importance of others in the worst of times. I recommend this to anybody who has a remote interest in comedies, zombie/end of the world flicks, or just having a good time at the theater, and look forward to seeing it again when it comes out.
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If you wanna watch a zombie comedy like Shaun of the Dead, watch Shaun of the Dead
kellyfacebook113 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
If you fancy watching a film about Zombies then something called "Zombieland" would feel like the best course of action. Unfortunately though Zombieland is very far from the rom-zom-com it's emulating, i.e. Shaun of the Dead. Shaun of the Dead had a great love and affection for this genre and played to it beautifully, interweaving sharp comedy with drama. Zombieland attempts this but ends up being a teen road movie that just happens to be set after the zombie apocalypse and I did not want to see a teen road movie. Don't get me wrong there are some good moments and the film starts off quite promising. However after Columbus (Eisenberg)and Tallehasse (Harrelson) meet the two girls it's begins to lose it's shine. The real problem with this film though is the poor writing. For a start the two girls are instantly unlikeable and the sudden attraction Columbus has for Wichita seem tacked on. Tallahasee's search for Twinkie (think thats how you spell it, I'm British so they're not well known over here) screams of smack you in the face product placement. Then there's the plot holes, oh so many plot holes... 1 - How did the girls manage to get past the zombies in the supermarket when they immediately noticed Columbus and Tallahasse? 2 - Why did the girls hide in the back of the supermarket on the extreme off chance that someone not zombie-fied would stumble upon them? 3 - Why bother conning the guys out of their car and weapons when there's millions of cars and guns just lying around? 4 - The amusement park was meant to be zombie free so why smash open the gate with the car to get in, thereby paving the way for zombies to enter? 5 - Since it's shown that zombies can easily climb why did the girls think a paltry 6 foot wooden fence surrounding the park would hold them back? 6 - Correct me if I'm wrong but if you live in a world over-run with homicidal, flesh eating zombies then surely you'd want to keep a low profile? Why then when you finally get to this supposed zombie free amusement park would you turn all the power on, lighting the place up like a Christmas tree? 7 - How did they manage to get on and off the boat ride without someone else to start and stop it? 8 - Why go on the ride that shoots you straight up to avoid the zombies when you know it'll immediately come back down? 9 - And finally, who's running all the power stations? Everything seems to be working without any problem. You can watch TV, pump petrol, even start up an entire amusement park yet surely the power would be the first thing to go?

In all the premise was interesting, though not original, and could probably have worked a lot better with some better writing and perhaps playing to the fact it's a coming of age road movie which just happens to be set after the zombie apocalypse.
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I've never hit a kid before. I mean, that's like asking who Gandhi is.
hitchcockthelegend26 August 2010
Zombieland is directed by Ruben Fleischer from a screenplay written by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick. The film stars Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin as survivors of a Zombie apocalypse thrust together on a road trip in search of a fabled Zombieless sanctuary.

As it stands now, Zombieland is the most successful Zombie based film in history. Proving that there is still life (no pun intended) in the undead based comedy. Reese and Wernick have stated that the idea for Zombieland was milling around their heads in 2005, a year after Shaun Of the Dead had made such a joyous appearance on the horror/com circuit. You get the feeling that the guys desperately wanted an American version to rival the British torch bearer. They got it.

Where Zombieland differs greatly from Shaun is that it unashamedly lives in a cartoon fantasy world. It blasts right out of the blocks with a montage sequence of death, dismemberment, crash, bangs and wallops, and never lets up on its carefree abandon approach. And hooray to that. In fact the film only pauses for breath for a short time at the mid-point, and even then it's to slot in one of the best ever cameo performances to grace a comedy. Away from the tricks and smart gimmicks that gloriously light up the narrative (the rules, baby, are awesome), Zombieland works so well because of its four characters.

This maybe a Zombie movie (and what Zombies they are too), but this is about four likable human beings asking us to invest some time with them as they surge from one situation to the next. Something we are only too glad to do. Be it Harrelson (never better) laying waste to any number of the undead, or Eissenberg (hello there little Woody Allen) offering up witticisms that hide a lonely heart facade; these characters prove to have depth. Yes we could possibly argue that both Stone and Breslin (spunky & perky respectively) deserve more screen time, hell they sure earn it, but as a foursome they combine to make one of the brightest buddy buddy-buddy buddy movies out there.

It's plot lite, and unlike Shaun, it has no great peril sequences to fully form the horror aspects of it. But it's so funny and awash with carefree charm we have no right to dwell too long on its tiny faults. One of the best crowd-pleaser's of 2009 and proof positive that an apocalypse really can be quite fun after all. 8.5/10
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A new style of comedy!
radivel28 September 2009
Zombieland is hardly a plot-heavy and dramatic masterpiece, but it IS very, very funny, and not funny in a way you're used to seeing in a comedy.

There are very few jokes made, the humor is more from people doing things that people might normally do, just filmed very well in a humorous fashion.

Oh, and the movie has lots of zombies and other awesome stuff that surround this entire idea of having every situation be the biggest "What the frack?!" you can possibly imagine.

The small cast was obviously having a great time when they made it, and all four characters did a very good job of fitting with the style of the movie.

Lastly, while the whole movie is hilarious, one scene in particular will have you in fits, one of the funniest single little scenes I've ever seen. But, no spoilers here!
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The most fun i have had at the theatre in a long time
blackmambamark2 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I mean come on, who doesn't think about what they would do if zombies took over the world. Its a fun, yet serious question to think about. Most movies have it right, by taking the serious side of things. But what if we take a video game approach and just run around killing everyone of them? Uh.......you can more than sign me up for this one. OK, lets face the honest question.......if your some little prissy girl who does not like or does not appreciate zombie films.......then this is the wrong movie for you. This movie takes everything you have learned from all those movies, and puts a comedic spin on it. I mean come on, a zombie stripper wearing nipple tasles running in slow motion.....how could anyone not want to see that? The movie is very basic in its groundwork, but excels in its humor and character drive. Woody is basically a zombie film buff's wet dream. A hoosier red neck who wants to just kill zombies for the rest of his life. Now i must admit, towards the middle of the movie, it almost felt like they weren't focusing on the whole zombie aspect that much........mainly because they were adding a little depth to each of the characters. But rest assured, by the end, it totally quenches your thirst. But through all the hilarious dialogue and funny little zombie killing sequences, the best part of the movie was hands down the cameo. Now if you have not heard who it is by now, im not going to say it........but it is almost genius, and probably the best cameo ever created, and i will stand by that 100%. Trust me, it is that funny. Bottom Line.......i know i love zombie movies, and i might seem a little bias........but damnit, this movie is easily the best comedy of the year. It was the perfect mix of humor and gore........not only that, the story was pretty decent, and very entertaining to watch unfold. This movie is seriously like a fun house at the carnival. It will easily be accepted by the zombie lover crowd, and the general population. This movie is easily one of the 10 best i have seen so far this year. If your looking to have a good time at the theatre, this movie will surely provide that.
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Overrated, overrated, overrated!
poetschn10 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I can't believe all of the acclaim that this movie is receiving! The movie is aesthetically shallow, lacks an original plot and characters, and ,although being advertised as a comedy, fails to deliver much laugh-out-loud humour. Zombieland is generic in all accounts, a tool of Hollywood for attracting teenage male viewers to the cinema with zombies and gore, and female viewers with a mediocre romance.

Like the movie as a whole, Zombieland's cinematography is shoddy at best. It tries to parody the intense camera work prevalent in Romero's work, but with a too-polished look and an overuse of slow motion (probably meant to be funny). It's like watching dawn of the dead if the cinematographer were the same guy that did the 40 year-old virgin. Zombieland, which in many ways tries to be America's answer to Shaun of the Dead fails to deliver visually. Whereas the latter juxtaposed hilarious action with a grim, washed-out physical atmosphere for comedic effect, Zombieland's camera work is too clean, to shiny, it simply lacks flavor, like the whole of the movie.

I have come to the conclusion that Zombieland is not a comedy, but a romance containing a few comedic scenes. As many have already said, the main funny parts are advertised in the trailer. The scene where Columbus's neighbor turns into a zombie as she and him are sitting on a couch together is an exception to this, as it is actually funny. Overall, concerning genre Zombieland is a romantic family values movie. Awkward, nerdy boy (Columbus) meets rebellious misandrist (Wichita), and after much mistrust, stupidity and "heroics" rebellious misandrist decides to stop being a bitch to awkward boy, and stay with him, illustrating the genesis of one of films most touching sadist/masochist relationships (sarcasm).

The film is advertised as a comedy, but turns out to be a family-values romance on the plane of Disney + ZOMBIES. The most generic monster + an extremely generic plot apparently equals profit. Not surprising in an age where directors like Michael Bay have a career, but I digress.

There are two good things about this film: one is twinkie loving, gun toting Talahassee, the most finely illustrated, if not the only finely illustrated character in the whole movie, the other is Bill Murray. At first glance Talahassee is a tough-as-nails barbarian with deep reservations about getting involved with people, for fear of losing them to the zombies. As the movie progresses we learn that he is on a quest for that sweet snack which he most adores, a twinkie. He finally finds his twinkie at the end of the movie, reinforcing the theme of completion. We also learn that the reason Talahassee fears connecting with people because of the loss of his son. He resolves this loss by becoming a father-figure to Wichita's sister, who lacks parents. Talahassee is a dynamic and consistently funny character and works wonderfully as a foil to reserved Columbus. Too bad he was in this movie. Bill Murray needs no explanation, he's Bill Murray.

Zombieland is a masterpiece of Hollywood economics. It is a combination of multiple genres, targeting at least two large demographics: males between the ages of 10 and 30, and females between the ages of 10 and 30. The presence of zombies, gore and (failed) badassery are supposed to attract the males. The strong, albeit bitchy, female character and the romantic plot are intended for the female demographic. The attempt at comedy is mostly a failure, but is intended to target the general comedy-loving populace. The film was, arguably, cheap to produce, with only a handful of speaking characters, a few sets (most of the film takes place in outdoor locations), one Bill Murray and zombie effects. The return is of course huge, partly because of false advertising. There is nothing special about this movie. Combine your average Superbad rip-off movie with Dawn of the Dead and there you go: copy, add, paste, the new Hollywood method for making money.

Don't waste 10 dollars on Zombieland, wait till you can rent it. In the meantime, if you want to see Zombies and laugh, gather some of your buddies and watch Zombi 3.

On a scale of A to Z I give this movie an M
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Good Fun But More Toothless Than Ruthless
zofos12 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
It's the zombie apocalypse. We meet Columbus, our nervous, nerdy, young hero filling up his car. In voice-over, he gives us a quick rundown of his rules of survival and then demonstrates them when he's attacked by two zombies in a car park.

On a deserted highway strewn with the detritus of the old world that once existed, Columbus runs into the crazy but dumb Tallahassee (the characters call themselves after the place they come from so they don't get too close to one another). Played by Woody Harrelson, he clearly is having a great time with his role. Without his charm, the film would really suffer as the younger actors don't bring a lot to the party.

Later on, they meet two double-crossing sisters (the older one played by a deep-voiced, huge-eyed Lindsay Lohan lookalike, the younger one played by Little Miss Sunshine's Abigail Breslin). These characters are so selfish, mean-spirited and ultimately stupid that it's hard to feel anything for them. The romance between Columbus and Wichita at the end feels forced and phoney.

The cameo by Bill Murray is a welcome respite. The affection the filmmakers and other actors have for him and his death in it, raise Murray to the level of national treasure. The world, even at its end, seems a much darker place without him.

As everything that happens in the film follows the lead character's rules for survival to the letter, there are no surprises. He seems to know everything in advance. The writers get so caught up in their own cleverness that they don't see the bigger picture of what they're doing. The zombies never really come close to turning the tables on the heroes and that kills any tension there might be (even when they are vastly outnumbered and surrounded, their lives are never really in any danger and they easily find a way out of any situation.) The self-conscious humour and deafening rock soundtrack constantly remind you that nothing bad is going to happen to the heroes.

Never as funny as Shaun of the Dead (Harrelson's running Twinkie gag isn't really that funny to begin with and the payoff is a letdown), never as intense as Dawn of the Dead, it falls between the two stools. So it's a good movie, not a great one. It's fun while it's on but never reaches the heights of George A. Romero's zombie flicks or 28 Days Later for that matter. There is apparently a sequel on the way; hopefully it will be tighter and scarier than the original.
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This Parody Of Zombie Films Is So Much Fun
atlasmb10 February 2017
Jesse Eisenberg plays a socially inept, neurotic young man who has survived a zombie apocalypse. He also narrates much of the film. The result is a parody of zombie films that feels similar to some early Woody Allen films.

"Zombieland" is grossly gory and tongue-in-cheek. It pays homage to many films of the zombie genre and dozens that are not. Surprisingly funny, its humor is spot-on and effective, helped by a strong cast that includes Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin.

The script hits the right notes continually, whether they are comedic or tender. And each twist feels right, keeping things interesting. The film never lags; it just shifts into a different gear.

This is a surprisingly fun film and it feels like it would stand up to repeated viewings.
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For zombies, by zombies, vaguely about zombies
steve-552-93442011 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
8.4 out of 10. Somebody must have given zombies the vote.

* SPOILER ALERT * Except, what's to spoil? The writers ran out of ideas roughly seven minutes into the film. It starts off OK, if not brilliantly. Via excessive voice-over, we are introduced to our first one-dimensional Hollywood cardboard cut-out character ("25-year old, nerdy, Jewish, obsessive-compulsive, A-student, virgin"). He has a set of rules for survival: a nice device, but none of the rules are exactly hilarious.

We then meet our second one-dimensional character ("roughneck with barely concealed warm heart"), and our first none-dimensional character ("feisty girl with no logical motivation for anything she does other than to present a series of romantic challenges for her one- dimensional male admirer").

** SPOILER ** Hence, the two cardboard men enter a shop looking to help reinforce the film's product placement deal. They kill three zombies in inexplicably unnecessary ways, then enter a back room to find two girls (how have they evaded the zombies?), waiting for real people (how did they know the only other two people in America would be passing by?), so they can trick them (why?) and steal their car (why, when there are millions of cars?) and guns (ditto) and drive off in the opposite direction.

Then, they lay another trap for the guys (how did they know they'd change direction from east to west and pass by in that direction, down that country road, at that time?), steal their car again (why, when they have one already?), kidnap them instead of leaving them behind (why? why? why? why? and, then again, why?). Ad absurdum, ad infinitum.

The middle hour of the film made no attempt to interrupt the enveloping boredom. With Bill Murray, this is the first time I've seen an actor introduced into a film exactly as if he were a piece of product placement, along with ample cringeworthy toadying. It felt as if the studio had said, "the script's not long enough, and we need an extra 25 pages. Bill Murray owes us a favour, so you can have him for an afternoon, if you like. But you only have an hour to write it." They remark on how much he looks like Eddie Van Halen, which is bizarre, because he clearly looks like Michael Jackson. But maybe they thought referencing Jackson would have felt too much like introducing a joke into the film.

The final act was merely a bland shoot-'em-up computer game, but without the intellectual dimension.

The role the zombies play in this film is as an uninteresting, unthreatening MacGuffin required to cause occasional distractions from what is in essence the lamest love story between two of the least interesting characters in modern film.

It's an insult to America to refer to Zombieland as an American Shaun of the Dead, a film which incidentally has an IMDb rating of just 7.8, against Zombieland's 8.4. Which is rather like Star Wars rating 7.8 against Plan 9 from Outer Space rating 8.4.

1 out of 10 because 0 isn't an option.
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Pretty bad (unfortunately)
marin19778 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I was really curious about this movie since I really like Woody Harrelson and the trailer looked so good. Sadly, what you see in the trailer is basically what you get in the movie when it comes to some kind of fun.

Main problems with this movie are: - a total lack of rhythm and coherence in the story - bad choice of actors (sadly, even Woody is nowhere near his best performances) - bad acting (cringe worthy) - ridiculous decisions made by the characters (the whole amusement park thing is extremely stupid)

One good thing in the movie are "the rules", which at least make sense.

Even the generally liked Bill Murray episode just induces facepalms... really, they let him go in and try to scare a man with a shotgun? What a wonderful idea.

I don't have the time and the inclination to really go through the plot and list all the problems with the movie. What I can give you is an advice - STAY AWAY from the movie if you have to pay money to see it.

If you can see it for free and you are curious, well I guess there is really no harm in that.
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Fantastic, offbeat
dfranzen7021 September 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Zombieland is a gleefully twisted mockumentary about a world full of you-know-whats, wherein only five living people remain in the entire world. It’s gory and disgusting, but most of all, it’s terrific fun, with just the right mix of violence and off-kilter comedy.

Jesse Eisenberg plays a young man named Columbus (because that’s where he’s heading, across the wasteland that is the middle US). Columbus is scared of just about everything: clowns, the cloths people use to wipe down tables, bathrooms, you name it. A hot apartment neighbor comes down with this hot new disease that all the cool kids don’t want to have, and before you know it he’s killed her (well, rekilled) and is on the run, fleeing zombies and making up a long list of rules of how to survive in the eponymous new land. Near the beginning of our story, he meets up with a man he calls Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), who’s, uh, on his way to Tallahassee, and they in turn meet with a couple of con girls (Abagail Breslin and Emma Stone).

Comparisons to Shaun of the Dead are somewhat apt, as both movies are comedic takes on a horror subgenre, and director Ruben Fleischer was influenced by the Simon Pegg-Nick Frost movie. But. Zombieland is both funnier and more sincere; it’s not a slapstick comedy, and it’s not really a horror film, as Shaun of the Dead was. In fact, it’s sort of quirky and genreless.

There were a LOT of laugh-out-loud moments for me in this movie, and I think a chief reason it all gels is that the leads are so perfectly cast. Eisenberg is awesome as the protagonist, the vulnerable hero, and Harrelson is a real hoot as the Mad-Max-like (or maybe Ash from Evil Dead) gentle psycho who desires nothing more than to waste zombies and find one, just one, Twinkie. Yes, I said Twinkie! I also really liked Abagail Breslin as the moppet Little Rock. It’s always tough for child actors to make the transition into more-adult roles, but she’s up to the task here. Emma Stone is tough and sweet as her sisterly counterpart.

There’s a cameo that’ll surely surprise you – and what’s more, it really works. The actor – no spoilers here! – really sells the role. Let’s just say that he plays himself. Did I mention that the main characters are headed to California and that basically everyone else in the world is either dead or a zombie? Everyone? You don’t often hear people applaud during a movie, but applaud we did at a couple key moments. The final scene in an amusement park is witty and lighthearted, at least as lighthearted as mowing down zombies with machine guns can be.

Now, granted, there’s plenty of blood splattering, plenty of gore, plenty of cursing, and even some nudity. And yes, it’s even gratuitous. But not for a zombie movie. For a zombie movie, those things are sort of underplayed a little bit, at least in the true horror sense – they’re played much more for chuckles than anything else. If anything, Zombieland is a movie that dares you to take it seriously, just so it can pull the rug out from under you and we can all laugh. It’s an offbeat look at an overused genre that cranks out the guts and guffaws in equal, lethal doses.
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Lame Predictable Unfunny Land
MayoSlice24 June 2010
Warning: Spoilers
This movie started weak, following a nerdy kid A little bit of stuff goes on, then as he's walking down a road a redneck picks him up and they go to a store to get Twinkies(That's meant to be funny) And some chicks steal their stuff for no reason, they find new stuff, the chicks take it again And the two boys go with the girls and the movie goes from 6-Zombies-so-far-land to Dumb-bland-crap-land I don't care if you have Bill Murry, when your movie sucks he can't save it At the end there's a big shoot-out but all the characters are stupid as hell, E.G. when the girls are trapped on "the blastoff" with no ammo, they hold the guns above their heads and try kicking the zombies off (why not hit them with the gun-butt?)

Over All: Not enough zombies to be Zombieland All the "comedy" felt like it was forced(VERY predictable and unfunny) Bill Murry... I still can't believe that was him (had to be Garfield Murry, because there is no way that's Groundhog Day Murry)
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the worst zombie movie ever
jszkutni8 November 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Comparing to this thing all spaghetti zombie movies are real pieces of art. Their behavior is completely random: they steel cars when there are plenty of cars around, waste ammo for unknown reason and generally behave like they were 6 years old. This what Bill Murray presented was incredibly stupid: he tried to pretend to be a zombie in eyes of an armed man fur completely no reason. What is the most crazy is that one of the characters is traveling America looking for some kind of candy., two girls are going through half of continent to visit some adventure park and when they got there of course they have to ask for attention of all zombies around. I cannot understand how bunch or total idiots like this could be last survivals of zombie infested continent. Moreover this movie is not funny at all.
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Very entertaining
gbill-748771 April 2017
There is some (probably requisite) violence in this zombie thriller, but it's also got humor, some nice touches in editing, and it's very entertaining. The cast is fantastic, with Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone, Jesse Eisenberg, and Abigail Breslin all turning in performances perfectly tuned to the genre. The scenes with Bill Murray are all very funny, and one part in particular is absolutely hilarious, but I won't spoil it. Eisenberg channels Woody Allen at times with his shy awkwardness. Trying to do both comedy and horror is difficult, but director Ruben Fleischer really pulls it off. This is a fun movie to watch.
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I didn't have any expectations, and it failed to meet that.
xavierlee-560-56419919 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I read the good reviews and the bad. Then I watched the movie and, frankly, just found myself asking why I decided to do so.

There was absolutely nothing in this movie that redeemed it. I'm almost furious at the review that pops up at the bottom of the IMDb page when you view Zombieland's stats. The plot was predictable. The characters were one dimensional (although they tried to add something with little asides that were nothing short of cliché). I never really felt like there was any conflict in the entire movie. Bill Murry's cameo was a little awkward. I'm not really sure what they were thinking putting that in there...but then what were they thinking green-lighting this film?

The main character really seems like a replacement for Micheal Cera, whom I'm not a big fan of either. Why is this "whiny bitch boy" character so prevalent in movies these days? Something I can't understand and I'm even a generation-X-er. I don't want to pay for a movie to hear some guy my age whine, bitch, and moan. I can just go outside my Hollywood apartment and hear that for free.

Bottomline: waste of time, waste of money.
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how to have a kick-ass time and laugh your brains out with people... and zombies too
Quinoa19841 October 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Inevitably, Zombieland will be (and already has been) compared to Shaun of the Dead, the other most notable "Zom-Com" of this past decade (or in that case 'Rom-Zom' due to it being a romantic comedy with zombies). This goes without noting other notable zombie-related comedies like Fido or involving animals like Black Sheep. But if one has to compare apples and oranges growing on practically the same field, here's the difference: 1) as much as I love Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg's work (specifically Hot Fuzz and Spaced), SOTD started to not be quite as effective, even as it was being admirably tried out technically, when it switched from a really funny and spot-on comedy and spoof of Romero's film to suddenly taking itself a bit too seriously as a zombie movie. 2) I (almost) hate to say this, but... Zombieland ultimately wins on counts of being so funny- or as the kids say, "f***in' funny as hell, OMG"- that it hurts, and giving us characters to take away with that we care about when, you know, they aren't slaughtering the undead one by one. It's also so bad-ass you can taste the awesome, something rare to find in movies outside of the Road Warrior.

It stars Jessie Eisenberg as a guy whom we may have seen him sort of play before, more or less, as the awkward kid who hasn't had sex and spent much of his time playing World of Warcraft and hooked on Mountain Dew when he got attacked by the first zombie he met - a girl from apartment 406 who got bit by a homeless man. What does this last part have to do with the plot? Well, only inasmuch that it gives the first incentive for Eisenberg's character, here named Columbus after the city he's going to originally, to craft a list of things to do when confronted with zombies. For example, seat-belts, or the "double-tap" rule which involves shooting a zombie, and then making sure to shoot once more in the head. He keeps this list and lists it almost like out of Wes Anderson's Bottle Rocket, and as a not-quite-wuss he fares OK on his own... and then he meets Talahassee (Harrelson, good Lord), a seemingly walking-talking-cursing redneck who misses his puppy Buck and just wants a damn Twinkie - and NOT those Hostess Snowball things.

It's after they pair up, and subsequently meet two con women (or rather con-woman and con-girl played by Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin) who at first just car-jack Columbus and Talahassee. That is until they start riding a bit together and find they need each other way more than they don't. This might make it sound like a squishy story, perhaps with some room for some ample social commentary like a Romero movie. It doesn't really have that. It's more akin to National Lampoon's Vacation, complete with a "quest" to reach a theme-park in Los Angeles, and maybe running into some hijinks and surprises along the way. If one of those may happen to be Bill Murray in his mansion where he's in zombie-garb and make-up to "blend-in", then so be it. Holy crap, did I just mention Bill Murray in a zombie movie? Damn straight, and now you know what kind of movie this is.

So yes, Zombieland has the things zombie-movie lovers go for first and foremost, which are really effective looking un-dead, some genuine scares (at least the kind that give easily-impressionable girls watching the movie at midnight the screams), and some really solid action. But it's first and foremost a comedy, one that is focused on character and wit and surprise and ingenuity over just satire, and it fires on all cylinders. I don't think I've had this much pure fun at a movie in a while (not counting the kind of a movie-lover like Inglourious Basterds or the "guy" movie comedy of the Hangover), and its all due to newcomer director Ruben Fleischer and his writers not pulling any punches. Since we believe in the world they're in, pretty much, we can buy whatever comedy springs out, sometimes from simple one-liners like the banter while driving in the car (i.e. Hannah Montana, Willie Nelson), or just the sheer insanity of the climactic battle at the theme park where the rides are used to their maximum, including (yes YES!) a Haunted House!

From its opening credits sequence that promises as much and gives an impression of its tone like none other this year except Watchmen, to the odd-couple bond between Eisenberg and Harrelson that works so well you can't see it any other way, to that nearly quirky/awesome way that Columbus faces his fear of clowns while re-writing his own rule on heroics, to... almost every scene with a couple of exceptions, no opportunity is wasted, or just taken upon by its makers. It's so sharp and original a take on a subject nearly beaten to death (pun intended) that its success just shows the potential still there: for all of the horrible and cheapo living-dead product out there, one can go back to this or the original Return of the Living Dead and realize something essential. It's about the people, not the zombies, and the people here, and how zombies are 'treated', simply just... rocks.
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