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Dec 29

Shaun of the Dead

shaunofthedeadGenre: Horror / Comedy
Year: 2004
Country: England

Director: Edgar Wright
Starring: Simon Pegg, Kate Ashfield, Nick Frost, Lucy Davis, Dylan Moran

 

It’s just one of those days when you’re feeling a little… dead

 

The zombie apocalypse is happening in London, not that Shaun notice this right away. Shaun is a regular chap who is happy with life when he’s at home playing video games or drinking beer with his dumb and obnoxious friend Ed. Right before the zombies emerged, his girlfriend Liz broke up with him due to him never growing up and taking responsibility for his life.

After him and Ed have realized what is going on in the world, they head over to save his mum, stepdad and Liz and head over to the local pub called The Winchester until everything blows over. However, things do not go as smooth as they have planned.

Shaun of the Dead is a very clever and witty comedy by Edgar Wright (Hot Fuzz, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World) who shows that he respect, love and understand the zombie genre. Instead of being a spoof where you are supposed to laugh at the material it is referring to, this one feels more like an homage where it gives tribute to the great zombie movies of the past. And also makes fun of the quick edited, flashy newer ones. It is simply filled with so many small references that most people won’t be able to spot on the first watch.

The film starts out absolutely great, one of the standout scenes is when Shaun wakes up and goes to the local grocery store without noticing the zombies who are outside. It keeps going very well until the gang enters the local pub called The Winchester and after that it kind of transfers into a movie that is about survival and the comedy gets lost in the last thirty minutes. I think it would have been better if they had held on to the fun tone through the entire film.

It demands a lot from a main character to not only be very funny but also be emotional and basically just show a wide range of acting skills that Simon Pegg (Hot Fuzz, Star Trek) has to do here but he is able to pull it off. He really brings it to this movie and is simply fantastic. I also liked Kate Ashfield (The War Zone, United) as his girlfriend Liz. She is a regular british girl that doesn’t need a lot of space and attention in the movie and it works nicely for me. Shaun’s deadbeat friend Ed, played by Nick Frost (Hot Fuzz, Pirate Radio), however is not a character that works for me. They should have given him at least some positive attributes so he wouldn’t be such an obnoxious character and also show why Shaun is friends with this guy to begin with.

Shaun of the Dead is a horror comedy that actually works and I can’t say that I’m used to enjoying that combination. The humour works great, the acting is good and there is even some gory scenes to enjoy. It’s a film that makes fun of the zombie concept while respecting it. What’s great about it is that the bigger lover of zombie movies you are, the more I’m sure that you will enjoy this.

 

 ★★★★½ 

 

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