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Zombieland Double Tap (2019) Movie Review

Updated on December 8, 2019
Noel Penaflor7 profile image

I've Been A Film Enthusiast as Long as I can remember. I Suffer from the Same Disease Leonard did in Memento.

 
 
MPAA Rating
R
Running Time
99 minutes
Director
Ruben Fleischer
Writers
Dave Callaham, Rhett Reese, and Paul Wernick

The battle between the sequels begins this weekend at a theater near you…

The winner will emerge victorious with your movie dollars. The loser to weep in shame, stewing in the viscous fluids of defeat.

Contestant #1- From the Disney empire, with its fingers in every one of your entertainment holes, it’s Maleficent Mistress of Evil. But, “evil” in a Disney kind of way. Disney movie, not Disney executive. Your kids want to see it because they’re kids and they will watch anything. Don’t forget to buy all the merchandise! Spend those Malefic-dollars, not those Malefi-cents. The Malaysian sweat shop toys will break after 2 days and forgotten in 3. But at least your kids will be happy for about 6 minutes before they ask you for something else.

You mean like Disney Plus?

Um, yes.

This portion of the review was bought and paid for by Disney. Please visit our overpriced and underwhelming Star Wars ride!!!

Contestant #2- Zombieland Double Tap. The one you really want to see. It’s rated ‘R’ so you can leave the kids at home with the nanny assuming they aren’t “distracted” by Ben Affleck and Jude Law. I’m just going to call this Zombieland for the rest of the review because it’s too long to write the entire title when you all know what I mean. It’s been 10 years—

-Let me do the math just to make sure. I’m one of those few Asian people that aren’t great at math. 2019-2009= 10 -

Yup, it’s been 10 years since the Zombieland and all of the players return. From the original cast to the writers. The promos tout director Ruben Fleischer as “the director of Venom”, like that’s something to be proud of since Venom sucks.

Anyway, these two contestants will vie for your moviegoing money even though we expect Joker to win again.

The battle for second place between the sequels begins this weekend at a theater near you…

Synopsis

I realize it’s almost pointless to recap the plot of Zombieland 2, since it’s just a hook for zombie jokes that land more than they don’t. If you liked the original, I can’t imagine you wouldn’t like Double Tap.

But SEO suggests padding, I mean, elaboration, on a plot for Zombieland. Since I know you care about that before you buy a ticket to Zombieland 2.

The math says it’s been 10 years and our little nuclear family of zombie killers and grifters are still as tight-knit as ever. You know what they say about zombie killing and how it brings a family together.

I think the saying is, “Zombie killing brings a family together” by Oscar Wilde.

Let’s see how our old friends are doing.

  • Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson)- Tal really hasn’t changed much. He’s quick with an F or an MF, deadly with a shotgun to any zombie that tries to make its way to him or any of his loved ones. Or liked ones, but deep down we know he’s a big softie.
  • Columbus (Jessie Eisenberg)- Columbus is still nebbish and neurotic. In other words, he’s the character Jessie Eisenberg plays every 2 or 3 films. Nobody does it better. Columbus is getting tired of the nomad lifestyle and is looking for a place to permanently call home.
  • Wichita (Emma Stone)- She’s still looking after her sister and 10 years really hasn’t dulled her edges. Wichita fighting rabid zombies is still more believable than Emma Stone as part Chinese and part Hawaiian in Aloha.
  • Little Rock (Abigail Breslin)- Little Rock’s body is going through changes. Her vagina is growing teeth. She was a little girl when the zombie apocalypse began and now, she’s a fully grown woman with grown woman wants and needs. R Kelly and Roy Moore want no part of her now that she’s no longer a preteen. Little Rock just wants to hang out with people her own age, maybe leave the nest.

Girl and a gun.
Girl and a gun.

After a decade on the run, our undead killing quartet has finally found a home. A white home. Really, the White House. It’s deserted, and as far as buildings go, as well protected from zombies as it can get. Maybe they can finally settle down.

Tallahassee sees the White House as a nice place to stay for a while, but he knows his life is on the road. If the other three want to go with him, fine. If not, he’s better solo anyway. Or so he says. Twinkies are no longer a part of his diet, but maybe it’s because the filmmakers couldn’t get the rights to it.

As stated before, Little Rock is feeling the need, the need for speed to run away and join a new group of people. Spending most of your formative years on the run from zombies will do that to you.

Wichita and Columbus have been a couple for a while now and have run into typical couple problems. Columbus thinks proposing marriage will fix everything. So he does. Wichita says no. Ouch.

The next morning Wichita leaves a note saying she and Little Rock have left. They have taken Tallahassee’s favorite vehicle.

Columbus is bereft. Tallahassee is miffed.

Girls with guns.
Girls with guns.

It’s weeks later and Columbus has found some semblance of comfort in the arms of another woman, a pink frizzy woman named Madison (Zoey Deutch). Of course her name is Madison. Tallahassee misses Little Rock but is too much of an alpha male to say so.

It’s the perfect time for Wichita to come back for weapons and supplies. She’s restocking because Little Rock has ditched her for some hipster poser. This is not awkward at all.

Now it’s up to our trio to find the one that completes them. That may prove to be a little more difficult as a new species of zombie has evolved, one that will take more than a double tap to bring down.

What Works With Zombieland Double Tap

  • The unforced chemistry between the 4 leads remain intact, even after a decade. You enjoy watching Woody, Jessie, Emma, Abigail, Buzz, Bo Beep, Forky, Hobbs and Shaw onscreen. That enjoyment helps even when some of the jokes don’t land.
  • A scene-stealing Zoey Deutch does more with the typical ditz role than you’d expect, considering you’ve seen this type of part dozens of times before. Madison is a wonderful foil to throw into our Zombieland family. If she survives, we hope she makes it into Zombieland 3.
  • Any sequence with Big Fat Death.
  • The opening frame of the movie got the biggest laugh. Mostly because it comes as a genuine surprise and is completely original.

What Doesn’t Work With Zombieland Double Tap

  • Even the comedy sequels that work tend to be 15% less funny than the original. This rule/guideline pretty much holds up in Double Tap. You laugh, but it will never feel as fresh as it did in 2009. Remember how disappointed you felt while sitting through the Zoolander sequel. You won’t go through that with Double Tap.
  • A sequence featuring Luke Wilson and Thomas Middleditch as, well, you’ve seen the trailer, is nowhere near as funny as it should be as most of the jokes misfire because the audience already knows where they’re coming from. The funniest line from this part of the movie comes from a barely-there Rosario Dawson (“Murray-ing”).

Overall

The Zombieland sequel hits its zombie target (you) way more than it misses. If you need a review to decide if you’re going to see this, you’re taking this way too seriously. Reserve your $40 per ticket charge in 2029 for Zombieland 3. Unless Woody Harrelson is dead.

3 stars for Zombieland: Double Tap

What’s Your Favorite Zombieland Rule?

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Comments

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    • Noel Penaflor7 profile imageAUTHOR

      Noel Penaflor 

      8 weeks ago from California

      Watching Z1 and Z2, Eisenberg doesn't look like he's aged *that* much. Neeson will play action characters into his 90s. I'd watch that.

    • Sam Shepards profile image

      Sam Shepards 

      8 weeks ago from Europe

      Jesse Eisenberg, the guy that can play a nerdy teen for 30 something years. He's wat Tom Cruise is for 30-35-year-old action characters. Or Liam Neeson in Taken 1,2,3, I mean non-stop, Run All Night, eeuh the Commuter. :)

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