Monday, May 07, 2007

SHAUN OF THE DEAD


This week's movie:
SHAUN OF THE DEAD

It’s important to keep a good sense of humor ……..even when you’re dead.

When I was a kid, I used to love scary movies. Monster movies, alien movies, zombie movies, are all best when viewed late late at night. I would sacrifice sleep, on a regular basis, to stay up long after my parents went to bed so that I could be alone – with my monsters. Call me crazy, but I swear that I can attribute my sense of humor to that that old habit. When you’re by yourself, with monsters, if you can’t find it a little funny, you’re going to have nightmares for the next week or so.

Now that I’ve recently become an adult (everything is relative), horror films just don’t hold the same fascination for me. First of all, they’re not all that scary, and second, they take themselves way too seriously. Horror films just aren’t fun any more. That’s why I really like this week’s film, SHAUN OF THE DEAD.

The same group of guys responsible for the current box office hit Hot Fuzz, hit the right mark in 2004 with their funny take on the “walking dead” film genre. First thing to know is that it is NOT just a parody of George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead. It’s more of a romantic comedy. It’s not even mainly about the zombies. It’s all about Shaun, and that’s a good thing because Shaun is funny, zombies are not.

Shaun’s friend, Ed, is a real wanker. He's unemployed and sponges off him. Shaun’s girlfriend, Liz, has had it with him, and his lazy attitude. You see, Shaun’s idea of a good time is playing video games and drinking beer down at the Winchester - every night. Liz is leaving him and, blimey! How’s he going to get her back?

When the zombies start showing up, he doesn’t even notice right away, because nothing much changes. Lots of people are the walking dead anyways. Besides, Shaun’s got other stuff on his mind. When he finally does notice, he sees it more as an opportunity to win Liz back than anything else.

The supporting cast includes Bill Nighy, who is terrific in just about everything he’s in; and Penelope Wilton as Shaun’s mother, who is the quintessential British mum. “Mum, you’ve been bit!” “It’s nothing, dearie. I don’t want to be a bother.”

Heard enough? Here’re a few more reasons to see SHAUN OF THE DEAD.

  1. It was the funniest comedy of 2004.
  2. It may, in fact, be the funniest zombie parody, slacker love story, set in England and co-starring Bill Nighy …. ever made.
  3. It’s soooooooo British.
  4. Everybody’s got a wanker mate like Ed.
  5. It’s been a long week. You don’t want to have to think too hard. You want – no! - you need – no! – you deserve to be amused. Put this disc in the player and it'll do the rest. Consider yourselves amused, and your player will thank you.
  6. My player is still thanking me. Just last night I tried to play the newest blockbuster release, whose name I won’t mention – (we’ll just refer to it as “Might at the Nuseum” - which is not a bad movie, but my player has gotten spoiled of late with better). My player said, “How come you don’t let me play any good movies anymore – like that SHAUN OF THE DEAD? C’mon, pleeeeease can we watch that one again, instead of “this” drivel. C’mon, I know you want to. SHAUN , SHAUN, SHAUN, …………….. C’mon, I’ll play you some foreign movies later.”
  7. It has all of the prerequisite comedy elements. That is, it has slacker bits, it has zombie humor (?????), it has wanker jokes, it has British jokes (even if you don't get them, you know they're supposed to be funny and you laugh anyway. British humor is more of a comedy of attitude than actual logical jokes), and social, cultural, and media satire. Try to pack any more into a movie, and it will actually be a hazard to one's health.
  8. It's the cult classic of the decade. If you don't see it, your co-workers will talk about you behind your back - and wouldn't you rather be the talk-"er" and not the talk-"ee"?
  9. Scores an 89% on the tomatometer. Apparently, most, but not all, film critics have a sense of humor.
  10. As of this writing, just squeaks into IMDB Top 250 at #234, between The Lion King and Roman Holiday, and climbing.
Most of all, SHAUN OF THE DEAD is exactly what movies should be - a fun time. So .....
Enjoy.

2 Comments:

At 5:25 PM, Blogger ltlmomma said...

I ABSOLUTELY LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS MOVIE IT IS AWSOE BEST COMEDY EVER I COULD WATCH IT EVRY DAY! ITS JUST HILARIUS AND I REALLY CANT EXPLAIN WHY EXCEPT THERE ARE SO MANY ZOMBIE MOVIES OUT THERE MAKING A COMEDY ABOUT IT WAS PURE GENIUS

 
At 7:46 PM, Blogger FranksFilms said...

I couldn't agree more! The reason I think it's so funny, is that a lot of the humor is based on cultural references that we're all familiar with, and can all relate to (like the zombie movie reference).

 

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