Movie Review: Zombieland
Prinz Lee wrote this review 5 years and 3 months ago
Written Oct. 2, 2009
Nine out of ten times when one indulges in a film pertaining to the undead, it’s going to be a thrill ride. Why? Our modern day society has a huge level of supporters for the art of fictitious monsters and the latest trend with vampires has proven just that. However, this time around, it seems like Hollywood’s gone to a place where for sure keeps the freak fetish alive only this time around with zombies. Yes, I know, there have been a few releases within the last decade about zombies and they’ve all been pretty well done and entertaining to the max, but it isn’t anything near what this one was… Zombieland” is a film that lends itself to two genres and believe you me when I say it most definitely works. In one aspect the film has a great sense of creepiness and never releases its grip of letting you (the audience) know that you’re watching a horror film. What I found most interesting outside of the cringe and gore was the sprinkles of comedy in which it dives into. Normally I’ll go on record and say please don’t screw up a horror film, but I must say this one’s the exception.
The art of horror and comedy was so well balanced; never did I feel like it was leaning way too much to one end or the other. Kudos to directorRuben Fleischer for being able to display such dedication and design both elements respectfully for movie goers as well as the art of filmmaking and the film’s life within itself.
Without giving away any spoilers, I’ll say this… the film’s story was kept so simplistic, a cave-man can follow it. The simple path towards the story was basically survival from a nation that’s been dismantled due to a mystery mention of “Patient Zero” who was the cause of having spread a plague known as “mad-zombie disease.” It swept up pretty much all of American society with the exception of some, yet few survivors. The objective was to get-the-fuck-outta-dodge with a mentality to which just leans towards trust no one other than yourself, however; as time goes on, the intertwined paths cross four of the survivors who have very little time to spare and get moving. With lots of questions and insecurity, the four create a light bond that elevates character build-up. It was done cleverly and didn’t miss a beat explaining who’s who and why they carry such unique characteristics. In the midst of playing a game of survivor, the four come across another survivor whose time was cut short due to a mishap, but was a vital piece in helping everyone engage with one another and keep a grounded level of humans and their existence. From that moment on, it was on and their personal journeys were set for a final destination. But there is a prerequisite that entails the mystery to zombie battle/survival and that’s based on a set of strict rules. Abide by them and you’ll be fine, break them… well… I don’t think things will wind up so easy going.
For the most part, talent is where zombie movies generally fail. So lets break down the cast. Jesse Eisenberg (aka Columbus) did a fantastic job! This kid’s got lots of talent and knows his role(s) and the level to which it’s to be kept. Never under or over done and always has this quirky way of releasing not just dialog, but himself as a character. He was never boring and bounced off very well against Woody. Speak of the devil, Woody Harrelson (aka Tallahassee) … holy shit! I mean come on; can this man make a bad film? If he has I have never seen one, and in this film he is brilliant. His energy on screen is so powerful it supercharges the rest of the cast. Not crashing their performances, but really lets you know who the man in charge is! Emma Stone (aka Wichita) … I'll be the first one to beg for the hot girl to die in a horror flick but Emma is great. She never gets irritating, which in horror films is rare for amazingly attractive women. Her character was likable and she has a lot of on screen charm and great appearance. Never a dull moment with her either and I’ll say this… look for her to bust into a lot of movies from the popularity she gets from this film. And finally Abigail Breslin (aka Little Rock) is a cute kid, not annoying at all. She’s actually likable and also tends to take you by surprise as she’s a 12 year old (in the movie of course) that releases lots of intelligence, courage, and forceful attitude. Again, you want the kids in horror flicks to bite the dust; however, her character was set up beautifully and was never weak.
Overall, I once again reiterate when it came to direction, Ruben Fleischer was able to present what I feel is and will be one of the best zombie flicks ever. Well executed, knew how scenes were supposed to be played out, and also didn’t seem like he lacked when it came to having fun and creatively releasing a form of raw art. Therefore, I would say visually amazing and yes I don’t see this film winning an Oscar or perhaps you as an individual screaming to the world to see it, however; it’s fair to say and I can almost guarantee that you’ll enjoy it. It’s worth your time and I really recommend viewing this perhaps in a packed theater. It’s a good pop-corn film and for sure has lots of replay strength.
With that said, damn I’d love to live in “Zombieland.”