Shaun of the Dead (2004) Movie Review
Written By: LFG
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Director: Edgar Wright
Producer: Nira Park
Writer: Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg
Date Released: 24 September 2004
Simon Pegg as Shaun
Nick Frost as Ed
Kate Ashfield as Liz
Lucy Davis as Dianne
Dylan Moran as David
Penelope Wilton as Barbara
Bill Nighy as Philip
Jessica Stevenson as Yvonne
Peter Serafinowicz as Pete
Rating = 3/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
Shaun (Simon Pegg) is an electronic salesman in London who is living an uneventful bachelor life with his best friend Ed (Nick Frost), and both seemingly have no direction in life. After Shaun got dumped by his girlfriend Liz (Kate Ashfield), he and Ed spend a drunken night at their favorite pub called the Winchester. As they stagger home, both are oblivious to a couple of zombies eating other people around them. The following morning, Shaun keeps his routine of heading down to a nearby shop to grab something for breakfast, still oblivious to the growing number of zombies in the neighborhood. Both Shaun and Ed finally got caught up with the news of a zombie apocalypse taking over London, and they immediately decided to rescue Shaun’s mother, Barbara (Penelope Wilton), and Liz. Their original rescue mission plan becomes a disaster as Liz’s friends and Shaun’s stepdad came into the mix. Now all of them navigate their way around a road full of zombies in hopes of going to the Winchester, where they plan to hide and ride out the apocalypse.
As with all zombie movies, there was a lot of gore in the film. However, there were some scenes where the zombies attacked some people, and while it was violent, it was not depicted as too bloody. Some notable graphic scenes were only shown for a few seconds onscreen, but it was still quite effective. The most graphic scene would have the be the one where David (Dylan Moran) was eaten and disemboweled by a group of zombies in front of his friends.
The Grave Review
Shaun of the Dead (2004) is a horror-comedy film with a lot of British humor, and from the title alone, most people know this to be a spoof of the 1978 classic, Dawn of the Dead. One could probably also say that it is a romantic love story but with some zombies in it since the hero, Shaun, was simply trying to win his ex-girlfriend back by rescuing her from the apocalypse to prove his worth.
The film had a great cast, and everyone had their own quirks. Shaun is not a perfect character; he is clueless when it comes to relationships and he seems to be stuck in a rut and does not know what to do with his life. However, it is evident that he is a great friend, especially to his equally clueless best friend Ed. Now Ed is another story. His character, while funny at times, is quite a nuisance and watching him is frustrating since he mostly just brings everyone in trouble. Despite that, he still has a bit of redeeming quality to him and that is his loyalty to Shaun.
The film had an excellent balance of comedy, horror, and even a bit of drama to it. There is one special touching scene where Philip (Bill Nighy) finally came to terms with Shaun and his issues. Another heartfelt instance was that of Shaun and zombie Ed playing video games at the shed. Even in the weirdest of circumstance, Shaun is still looking out for Ed. Moreover, the funniest moment in the film was when the entire group walked amongst the zombies on their way to the pub while they pretended to be zombies themselves. It was both hilarious and thrilling to watch.
What made this film unique is the fact that the entire course of events happened in only two days, and unlike other zombie films, the zombie problem was immediately resolved. Everything was back to “normal” after a few months. It was interesting to see how humans and zombies now coexist in the same world. Perhaps it’s because this is more of a comedy film rather than a horror one.
For the foregoing reasons, Grave Reviews gives Shaun of the Dead (2004) 3 out of 5 graves.
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