Monday, March 13, 2006

Shaun of the Dead (2004)

Starring Simon Pegg, Kate Ashfield, Nick Frost, et al
Rated R, 99 minutes

I’ve done a lot of good reviews for Top Five. And by that I mean movies that scored well – I don’t profess to even be a decent writer. I don’t want to say I’m seeking out a bad review, but I just want to be able to see films objectively. Normally I review films I seek out to see myself, and thus I already like them going in. This time, I wanted to be different. I perused my brother’s DVD shelf and plucked a title that I thought people wanted to hear about. I saw one that said to me, “hmm, I saw commercials for this and wondered how it was.” Thus, here is my review of “Shaun of the Dead.”

Shaun (no last name given for him or any other character) is living your typical shitty life, living with a shitty roommate, and working a shit job. His girlfriend breaks up with him, he has to go see his mother the next day…so he gets piss drunk. All the while not noticing the undead spawning around him. He vows to turn it all around before falling asleep in a stupor. When he wakes up, Shaun slowly comes to grips with the infestation and snaps into action with a plan to survive.

As a rule, I avoid zombie movies because they’re trash and cliché. I knew this was a comedy, but damn was it…awesome. A zombie movie with a good plot, real fleshed out players and a lot of funny. Lots of funny. The movie starts out slow and decidingly British, but once Shaun takes on the zombies (oops, we don’t use the Zed word) it just kicks into overdrive. Everybody in Shaun’s party gets face time to develop their character and fire off some zippy lines. A really cool story gets told in the hacking and slashing. I can’t begin to do it justice, but it has way more going on for it than a lot of serious films. And I won’t spoil another single joke. Not a dull moment after the turning point.


I feel really guilty giving it the full monty, but I came in expecting a quirky British film with no pizzazz and little in the way of laugh-out-loud funny and got the exact opposite. And how it ends! Oh, how it ends. Just awesome.

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