Written by Jordan Zhu
The views expressed in this article are those of the author’s and are not representative of the views of U-Insight.
A somewhat entertaining cheap thrill without much substance; a shallow take on subject matter, tattered with plot holes as well as an underdevelopment of characters, Zombieland: Double Tap loses its slim chance to revitalise the entire zombie genre.
In 2009, Zombieland – the first in this series – was phenomenal. With a standard setting of the beginning of a zombie outbreak, the first movie of the series offered a new comical and refreshing take on the zombie genre, thus this sequel to the 2009 cult favourite, which was held in high regard by many zombie fans, had some big shoes to fill.
The zombie genre has been facing a decline in popularity in recent years, with a lack of interest from both producers and audiences. The last zombie-themed Hollywood blockbuster produced was World War Z (way back in 2013) and is a terrible cinematic adaption of Max Brook’s World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, that barely scratched the surface for the various socio-political themes discussed in the book. With the AMC TV series, The Walking Dead, facing a decline in viewership since the past seasons as well, the zombie film genre is facing its own apocalypse. Zombieland: Double Tap was the only zombie film to look forward to after the wildly popular Train to Busan in 2016 from South Korea.
Zombieland: Double Tap, following the same timeline several years after its predecessor, sets the story of how its four main characters – Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg), Wichita (Emma Stone) and Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) – settle down in the zombie apocalypse and the subsequent adventure that takes them half-way across the United States.
The movie utilises the classic Hollywood humour-style filled with innuendos, sarcasm, overly exaggerated stereotypes and – who could leave out – plain, simple ideocracy and violence. Tastes aside, the humour is rather witty and applaudable, and coupled with the right amount of brain-splattering gore and gun-blazing violence, the movie serves up a real piece of cinematic entertainment. Puns and references were made back to the first film, which definitely brought smiles back to old fans who have waited 10 years for this sequel. The scarcely seated cinema hall was filled with laughter. Kudos to that.
It is a fun and easy movie to watch, more so when there’s barely any plot to follow. Don’t worry, to prevent spoilers, plotlines will not be listed in detail. However, the entire story shows a lack of effort in writing, with more effort channelled to entertain the audience with baseless humour. The flawed plot was not even salvageable by Academy Award-nominee, Eisenberg, and Oscar-winning actress, Stone.
Personally, their performance in Zombieland: Double Tap was barely up to par with their stunning work with Eisenberg in The Social Network as Mark Zuckerberg or Stone in La La Land – both films which have won multiple awards. The trailer boasts the addition of new characters, however, these characters were also underdeveloped, and seemed like easily replaceable calefare. The addition of these new characters also resulted in the lack of screen time for the main four ones to develop as the film progresses.
In a nutshell, this movie is a short (slightly over 90 minutes), thrilling ride that is disappointing for anyone looking to be amazed with substantiated and well-developed comedy.
Watch it or not?
Free and lonely: Nope, unless you really got nothing better to do
For a date: Not that type of horror that will send your plus one jumping into your arms
Got deadline this week: Can watch to de-stress, especially with zombie parts flying around, but your deadlines are still scarier
Friend jio you go drinking: Meet your friend; watch this during weekdays instead to save money