Release: 2019 Director: Ruben Fleischer
Do you have a favorite pair of pajamas that you put on before you go to sleep? Or maybe just some sweatpants you throw on after work when you get home. Your favorite chair you can rest in and turn on your favorite television show to wind down and really relax. That is how Zombieland: Double Tap feels, like you are being welcomed by your favorite pair of sweats after a long day. It’s familiar and exactly how you’d like it, nothing really changes.
It’s been ten years since we left our zombie surviving team of misfits. Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson,) Columbus (Jesse Eisenburg,) Wichita (Emma Stone) and Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) are still trying to make the best of the little family they have in the crazy world of Zombieland. They are exactly as you remember them, which is insanely impressive since it has been so long since we last saw them. Now Tallahassee feels more like a father to Little Rock but she is 18 now, she wants something new. Wichita and Columbus are still together, but their relationship is starting to show cracks as both want something else for the future. The wit and charm these four gave us back in 2009 is still intact and none has been lost the change of time.
The first movie was simple, we are basically following Columbus as he tries to find his place in this new, zombie infested world. Now our heroes understand everything around them and time has matured (most of) them. Little Rock is tired of living the simple life with her new found family and wants to find something new, so Wichita and LR leave to find something new. Well they find it in the form of a hippie who Little Rock falls for and they run off together, so it’s up the rest of the group plus a new member, Madison (the only real named character in the entire film, which I think is hilarious), as they try to find them and bring their family back together.
The cast really does bring it all and then some for this film. Each of these fine actors have gone through a lot of changes in their careers since they last inhabited the world of Zombieland. The trailer tell us all that all of them are now either Academy Award nominees or winners, but that doesn’t seem to matter when Columbus is still trying to figure out his love life. Out of everyone, Emma Stone is the one that seems to have really matured as an actress. Her timing and chemistry with her fellow cast is something to admire. The best addition to this core group is easily Madison (Zoey Deutch) who is a bubbly, kind-hearted and silly girl who has been living in a cooler within a mall for years. She is ridiculous and has some of the best laughs in the film.
While the main group and the return to this world is a welcome one and no matter what you are going to be laughing your ass of way too many times to count, the script just can’t seem to figure out what direction it wants to go in. Multiple times you are introduced to either more characters or enemies that you would expect to have a larger impact on the story, but shortly after you realize that the main plot needs to move forward without the added baggage (Rule 7: Travel Lightly).
Zombieland: Double Tap is just as funny, quick-witted, and charming as the first outing. These characters feel exactly as they should. The new additions are welcome and the pacing is fast and fun. While it is just as good as the first, Double Tap doesn’t quite capture the same magic so I will have to say that I like the first Zombieland more. That shouldn’t discourage anyone, Double Tap is one of the funnest films of the year and if you enjoyed what you saw 10 years ago then you won’t be disappointed now. My new rule, go watch it.