Zombieland: Double Tap

Ready to kill some zombies
Verdict: 
6/10 - With fewer laughs and less originality, Zombieland: Double Tap fails to capture the magic of its predecessor.
Release Date: 
Friday, October 18, 2019
Written by: 

Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin reunite after 10 years to kill some more zombies.

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Zombieland was a critical and commercial success when it was released in 2009, so it was hardly a surprise when a sequel was announced - although no fan expected to wait a decade for it to get made.

Zombieland: Double Tap is set 10 years after the events of the first film, with Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg), Wichita (Emma Stone) and Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) now a little family unit living in the White House.

Little Rock is feeling stifled by father figure Tallahassee and Wichita gets freaked out by Columbus' marriage proposal, so the sisters leave one day without warning. One month later, Wichita returns and reveals Little Rock has run away with a musician named Berkeley (Avan Jogia), a pacifist who doesn't believe in weapons.

Knowing there are evolved zombies out there, which are faster, smarter and harder to kill, the group sets off in search of Little Rock, with Columbus' new lover Madison (Zoey Deutch) in tow.

This sequel doesn't do enough to justify its existence. It was nice to see these familiar faces back together again - and the newcomers were funny and like a breath of fresh air - but the story is weak and the script not as edgy or inspired as the first.

What made the first instalment so great was the way it felt new, quirky and original, so it was always going to be a challenge to replicate that. It doesn't help that the zombie genre is now super popular thanks to TV shows like The Walking Dead, which started in 2010, and screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick have had success employing their unique voices for mainstream hits like Deadpool.

Double Tap has some fun moments - make sure you stay for the credits - and cool kill sequences. And while the script contains some decent jokes, one-liners, and witty pop culture references, these are nowhere near as funny or exciting as the first time. There wasn't a strong enough story to invest in and at times it felt flat and lifeless.

Harrelson can always be depended on for comedy value and he gives the film all he's got. Eisenberg is as sweet and nerdy as ever, and his scene with his double, played by Thomas Middleditch, was a highlight. Stone and Breslin weren't given much to do and they didn't stand out, especially next to franchise newcomer Deutch, who was hilarious and a scene-stealer as the dumb blonde character. Rosario Dawson had a small badass role, while Luke Wilson was a fun addition.

You would expect that director Ruben Fleischer waited 10 years to reunite the team because he wanted to make the sequel better or as good as the first. Sadly, that's not the case. It's a letdown for those who loved the original.

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