Release Date: October 2nd, 2009
Click here for the Zombieland Trailer.
Columbus(Jesse Eisenberg) is a college student living in Austin, Texas when the world is suddenly turned into a post-apocalyptic, zombie infested wasteland due a virulent form of human adapted mad cow disease. Columbus isn't the bravest person and typically spent his time alone in his apartment playing World of Warcraft. He has stayed alive in what he calls "Zombieland" because of his lack of friends and attachments as well as not having a close relationship with his parents. Columbus has also stayed alive thanks to a set list of rules he created for survival. Columbus is trying to make his way back to Columbus, Ohio where his parents live, hoping to find them still alive. On his way there he runs into Tallahassee(Woody Harrelson). Tallahassee is a renegade outlaw searching the country for the last remaining Twinkies in the world. Tallahassee, like Columbus, doesn't like to form attachments and insists that the two call each other by their home town names, Tallahassee and Columbus, instead of their actual names.
Tallahassee dislikes Columbus almost instantly, finding his safety and list of rules ridiculous and annoying. The two make their way to a grocery store so Tallahassee can look for Twinkies. While in the store they find three very obese zombies which they quickly dispose of. Tallahassee becomes angered when he can not find any Twinkies and decides to check in the back store room. While back there he finds two sisters, Wichita(Emma Stone) and Little Rock(Abigail Breslin). Wichita tells Tallahassee and Columbus that her little sister Little Rock was bitten by a zombie and that they have decided to put her out of her misery. Wichita asks Tallahassee to do it but decides that she wants to do it herself. When Tallahassee gives her his gun, she turns it on him and Columbus revealing that her and Little Rock were conning them. They take Tallahassee's car and all of their guns and supplies and leave.
Columbus and Tallahassee leave the grocery store and soon find a Hummer H2 loaded with automatic weapons, shotguns and loads of ammunition. They take the truck and go after Wichita and Little Rock hoping to get back their things. The two spot their stolen car broken down on the road but end up getting conned again by the two girls who this time take Columbus and Tallahassee prisoner. Tallahassee manages to grab his gun back from Little Rock and after an intense stand-off with Wichita, Columbus manages to convince the group that it would be better if they all worked together to survive.
Wichita and Little Rock are on their way to an amusement park in California called Pacific Playland. According to rumor, the place is supposed to be zombie free and safe to go to. During the drive, Wichita informs Columbus that Columbus, Ohio has been completely overrun and destroyed by zombies. Wichita sees that Columbus is upset and gives him a chance to leave and make his way to wherever he wants to go, but Columbus starts to fall for Wichita, essentially one of the last females on earth, and decides to stay with the group. As they make their way to Pacific Playland, the group decides to pass through Hollywood and look at the mansions of all the celebrities. Looking for a place to stay, Tallahassee takes the group to the mansion of his favorite actor, Bill Murray. While staying in the house, Tallahassee teaches Little Rock how to shoot better while Columbus and Wichita share a bottle of wine and begin to express feeling for one another. Realizing this, Wichita leaves with Little Rock for Pacific Playland, going back to their old way of not trusting anybody but each other as a means of survival.
Columbus, realizing he loves Wichita, decides to go after the two girls, convincing Tallahassee to go with him. When they arrive at the amusement park, Wichita and Little Rock turn on all the rides and lights which unintentionally attracts the attention of every nearby zombie. Wichita and Little Rock try to flee the park but have to jump out of their car which had been overrun by zombies. They make their way to a drop tower ride which temporarily keeps them out of harms way. Their ammunition is running low and zombies have begun climbing onto the ride. Columbus and Tallahassee and Columbus arrive and Tallahassee manages to lure almost all of the zombies towards him as Columbus goes after Wichita and Little Rock. As Columbus arrives at the drop tower he is faced with his worst fear of all time, a zombie clown. Realizing the sister's lives are at stake, Columbus overcomes his fears and kills the clown, saving Wichita and Little Rock. In the meantime, Tallahassee had locked himself in a small game booth and single-handedly taken out the remaining zombies.
After the battle, Tallahassee and Columbus scour a fried Twinkie stand for Tallahassee's last joy in life, a Twinkie. As the two scour the stand they hear a noise behind a door and the two blast the door to see two rats run out. While investigating the store room Tallahassee realizes that they had shot the last box of Twinkies and filled the treats with buck shots. Tallahassee grows furious and the two leave the store when Wichita and Little Rock drive up. Little Rock pops out of the car's sunroof and tosses a Twinkie at Tallahassee, who gets teary-eyed and smiles at Little Rock. After this. Columbus realizes that this is the only family he needs and the four leave Pacific Playland together.
If you know anything about me, you know that I absolutely love zombie movies, games and basically anything that has to do with zombies. So naturally, when I saw that a new zombie movie was coming out I was naturally excited. I have seen zombie movies take different paths over the years, some going for the traditional horror feel like George A Romero's Dawn of the Dead or by going the way of comedy zombie films like Edgar Wright's Shaun of the Dead. Making a good zombie movie, whether it be funny or scary, can be a tricky business. It is very hard to scare audiences today and it is equally hard to make them genuinely laugh with the film instead of at it. But Zombieland is one of those rare gems that is a truly unique and enjoyable film.
There were so many aspects of the film to enjoy that it is hard to begin. Probably one of the funniest things about the film was the list of survival rules created by the character of Columbus. It wasn't just the rules themselves that were funny, it was how they were incorporated into the movie. The rules were narrated by Columbus but also appeared in the background either on the ground or on the backs of truck beds etc... Along with the rules was the actual character of Columbus. Jesse Eisenberg did a fantastic job in the role. His character actually made you stop and think "how in the world did a kid like this survive?". And just when you start to wonder that, one of his survival rules, that actually makes sense, comes into play and shows you how he has survived. But I really liked the character of Columbus. I found him to be an unorthodox hero which was actually quite refreshing in the zombie apocalypse.
Then we come to Tallahassee. Tallahassee was, without a doubt, the key funny man in this movie. Woody Harrelson hasn't done a real big movie in a while and he definitely picked a good one to comeback with. This is probably his best work since Natural Born Killers. He was nearly flawless in his presentation and truly made a character that everybody will love. He was practically a mirror opposite of Columbus, which made their exploits together that much more funny. I loved his carefree attitude, like it was nothing that the world was overrun with flesh eating zombies. Wichita, played by the ever gorgeous Emma Stone, was a character I had trouble liking at first. It was definitely they way the character was written and not about the acting. Stone did a terrific job in her role as well. Her character, at first, was annoying and I actually hated her for what she did to Columbus and Tallahassee. But I grew more attached to her as the movie went on. The same goes for Little Rock, played by Abigail Breslin. She was the innocence of the film although she wasn't very innocent living in a zombie apocalypse. However, she did show how she has matured in her acting career from films like Signs and Raising Helen which she did at a much younger age.
The plot was interesting, although there wasn't much to it. Basically just a group of people doing their best to survive. But it was the little things that made the movie as good as it was. It is first and foremost a comedy but it did a nice job of adding in parts that startled you or made you jump a little bit. It was almost like the perfect blend. This movie could have gone the opposite way and been a complete disaster however it put all the right pieces into place and turned out to be one fantastic move. Seeing this will definitely be a very fun and enjoyable time at the cinema. The acting was fantastic, the plot was original and the movie was just overall a big, laugh out loud, gory funfest.
If you like comedies, zombies, action, gore, post-apocalyptic scenarios and just all around fun movies, then you can not go without seeing this film. It truly is one of the best films of the year so "its time to nut up or shut up" and go see this film. I give Zombieland 10 Epic Quests for Twinkies out of 10.
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