By Mark Ramsey | 2009/10/05

I think we have 28 Days Later to thank for the idea that zombies are no longer undead, now they’re just unwell.

Isn’t it scarier to think of some bloodthirsty creature emerging from the grave than to imagine your friend with the temperament of a British soccer fan and the skin of Jessica Simpson pre-Proactiv?

If it’s a comedy about bad skin, it’s only appropriate that Zombieland features a wonderful cameo from the King of satirical comedy and bad skin himself, Mr. Bill Murray. Murray’s hilarious segment is worth the price of admission, but beyond that, Zombieland is no Shaun of the Dead.

Jesse Eisenberg stars as the David Niven of awkward, and awkward is firing on all cylinders here. Eisenberg turns awkward up to 11 – especially in those scenes where he plays opposite the only thing in the universe more terrifying than a bloodthirsty zombie: That’s right, a girl.


Jesse has a boatload of rules to follow which can help you survive the zomb-ocalypse. “Beware of bathrooms” is one, and this is a good rule to follow whether or not the stalls are surrounded by zombies, if you ask me. Ditto for “fasten your seatbelts” and “cardio.” But what “give a hoot, don’t pollute” has to do with zombies I’ll never know.

Woody Harrelson is Jesse’s zombie-killing sidekick. “I haven’t worked opposite zombies since Courtney Love in The People vs. Larry Flynt,” said Harrelson.

Woody wields a sawed-off shotgun and a taste for Twinkies, although he seeks them out in the supermarket’s baking supplies aisle, which doesn’t make any sense.

And spunky little Abigail Breslin has grown into the kind of frumpy teen that school libraries and mathletics were created for.

Co-star Emma Stone proves that even in the darkest moments of apocalypse its critical to slather on a maximum amount of eye shadow. “The virus may have destroyed humanity, but virtually every mirror remains intact,” she notes.

“Emma if your eyes had any more shadow I could use your nose as a sundial,” said Woody.


Leave it to our heroes to enter one retail establishment after another, only to discover that in every case there’s a batch of zombies evidently working in the back who rush to the front when called. If zombification is the price we have to pay for attentive retail cashiers, then I say bring it on.

So our heroes head to the amusement park in LA, because what better place to evade murderous zombies than a wide-open theme park with noisy, brightly lit rides!

Woody is pining away after his lost son, with whom he manufactured a wallet out of duct tape. “We also manufactured a Big Wheel out of duct tape, but I took it away when my boy ran over the neighbor’s duct tape garden and my neighbor used his duct tape iPhone to call the police,” said Woody.

Zombieland is fine, but I’m still hoping for Shaun of the Dead 2.


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