When it comes to zombie movies, not all have the same sense of taste. There are the slow zombies, the fast zombies, the misunderstood zombies, and yes, the funny zombies. Of that latter group is a great Woody Harrelson-led flick called Zombieland and it is now available on the super streamer Netflix.
In what has become part of a plethora of zombie-related entertainment (thank you The Walking Dead), Zombieland looks to add fun to the genre as it ramps up the hijinks along with the gore. The movie stars, along with Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin as survivors of the zombie apocalypse who are out looking for a place to call home, without zombie interference.
Eisenberg is Columbus, a former college student trying to make his way from Austin, TX back home to Columbus, OH to see if his parents are still alive. Along his journey, he meets Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), who doesn’t really have a direction but is quite serious when it comes to offing zombies. He is also very creative on that front.
Now, Woody Harrelson’s Tallahassee isn’t the warm sort but decides it’d be best to team up with Columbus. Soon after their teaming up, the pair meet “sisters” Wichita (Stone) and Little Rock (Breslin). At first, they appear in need of assistance as Little Rock looks infected but in reality, the girls are con artists and end up stealing everything Tallahassee and Columbus own, including their Escalade.
The girl’s goal is to get to Pacific Playland, an amusement park on the west coast that they’ve heard is a zombie-free zone. The two men, meanwhile, come across a weapons-filled Hummer H2 to track down the girls and what was stolen from them.
Along the way, the zombie killings become more and more creative. The humor is ramped up throughout, as is the gore. When the guys catch up to the girls, a stand-off ensues, which ends when they all decide to head west together.
The quartet eventually reaches Hollywood, where they make themselves visitors to Bill Murray’s mansion. The actor, playing himself, is alive and well and uninfected. It’s a wonderful bit of fun, even when Murray is mistaken for a zombie while playing a practical joke, getting offed by Columbus in the process.
Throughout their journey, Columbus and Wichita have begun to get closer. This fact begins to worry Wichita, so she sneaks out with Little Rock to Pacific Playland without the boys. Her fear is in getting too attached to Columbus in a time when death could come at any moment.
But Pacific Playland is not the zombie-free zone the girls were led to believe it was. They find themselves in a very precarious situation, stuck on a ride when the guys arrive. The true battle begins as the four are surrounded by the hungry chompers.
Zombieland is at once a fun film. Throughout the film, its constant running gag is the advent of rules Columbus puts together in order to help survive the zombie-infected world. As the four continue to lay waste to zombies, rules (there are 33 of them) pop up in which Columbus informs the viewing audience what the rule is and where on his list it’s placed.
Zombieland is brought to the world by Ruben Fleischer, who also directed its sequel, Zombieland: Double Tap. Fleischer has more zombie-related material in his resume as he is also part of the group that brought the popular Santa Clarita Diet to Netflix. Fleischer was able to construct Zombieland for $23 million and the humor-filled film paid off by bringing in over $102 million at the box office.
When it comes to comedy, Woody Harrelson is no stranger. He got his start on the long-running, very popular comedy TV series Cheers. He enjoyed a co-starring role in the romantic comedy Doc Hollywood, then turned that into one of his more popular comedies White Men Can’t Jump with Wesley Snipes.
As time went on, Woody Harrelson began to venture away from straight comedy. He was in Natural Born Killers, The People vs. Larry Flynt, Wag the Dog, The Thin Red Line, as well as continuing to mix in some comedy with films such as Kingpin, a movie that first teamed up Woody Harrelson with Bill Murray.
Throughout the years, Woody Harrelson has found a good balance between the fun and the serious. He has found roles as the bad guy as well as the good guy. He has found time in real-life roles, portraying Lyndon B. Johnson in LBJ, while also starring in the science fiction and fantasy world such as The Hunger Games franchise, War for the Planet of the Apes, and Solo: A Star Wars Story.
Woody Harrelson has also done some time in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as he made a cameo in Venom as serial killer Cletus Kasady, who everyone knows as the supervillain Carnage. Next up for Harrelson is his return to that character in the highly anticipated sequel, Venom: Let There Be Carnage.
For now, head on over to Netflix to get your laugh on with Woody Harrelson and crew as they take out the walking, bumbling, and stumbling dead in Zombieland.