The Zombieland sequel falls just a little short – here’s our review.
Ten years on from Zombieland, director Ruben Fleischer is back with Zombieland: Double Tap. The usual gang – played by Emma Stone, Woody Harrelson, Abigail Breslin and Jesse Eisenberg – reunite to find Little Rock, who’s gone missing with a hippie named Berkeley, much to Tallahassee’s dismay.
And it’s fair to say that zombie comedies are having their moment this year with Jim Jarmusch’s The Dead Don’t Die and the upcoming Little Monsters by Abe Forsythe. Yet Zombieland: Double Tap does little to revolutionise an already oversaturated market of films that try to compete with the ever-popular 2004 Shaun of the Dead. Whilst the original remains fun, this follow-up struggles. Unlike its counterparts, a unique use of graphics and pratfall comedy only take it so far.
Plotwise, this time the group of misfits settle nicely into the typical structure of a road movie, tackling complications along the way. The dynamic between the leads is fantastic, and the actors establish their usual roles comfortably, falling right into step where they left off. However, Zombieland: Double Tap has a little too much fun utilising stereotypes for its humour, particularly with the character played by newcomer to the series Zoey Deutch. Although she does her best with a bad hand, it becomes increasingly uncomfortable to watch joke-after-joke get made at her expense. If you are expecting thoughtful character arcs, you may have to look elsewhere. Here, it’s hard not to feel just a little uncomfortable.
Contrary to this, the most enjoyable part of the film dwells within the humour. Wise life lessons pepper the script, “No guns, just hugs” and “if you love something, you shoot it in the face” being two of the most popular that the film puts across. You do get a few laughs for your money, and to the movie’s credit, it acknowledges its ridiculousness from the beginning, making the narrative flaws almost forgivable.
Yet whilst Zombieland: Double Tap does little in the way of justifying its sequel status, and whilst it scrambles together enough material to just about cover 99 minutes, there’s still something just a little uncomfortable about it.
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