Get Your Fix with some Flicks: March Edition


Kenneth Reyes, Co-Sports Editor

A long time ago, in a galaxy far–alright, you know what? I’ll cut to the chase. I’m here to blow everyone’s mind with my monthly movie review. With that said, I’m here to change things up by jumping into the hipster bandwagon, and reviewing a cult classic that goes by the title “Shaun of the Dead.”

Now, some of you might be asking “Ooh, what’s it about?” To that I say “It’s a zombie movie that’s part of a brilliant trilogy. It also has a brilliant cast, starring both Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, and is directed by the brilliant Edgar Wright. Also, you are stealing my spotlight, and I don’t appreciate it. This is the closest thing that I’ll ever be to being Beyoncé, so please let me have this.”

So yes, the movie. It’s about this group of people who are trying to survive a zombie outbreak in London. The lead roles consist of Ed (Simon Pegg), who is portrayed as a screw-up who can’t get his act together and is constantly hanging out with his friend Ed (Nick Frost) who lives a lifestyle identical to that of a child and is constantly mooching off of him. Together, they’ll fight through hordes of zombies, make fart jokes, and bicker; all in the good name of comedy.

By now, you might be rolling your eyes with how tired and overused this concept is. Here’s the twist: it’s not. Why not? Because it’s a cleverly written comedy movie, and that’s what cleverly written comedy movies do. Let’s start with the title. ‘Shaun’ is an obvious rhyme to ‘Dawn,’ which comes from the movie “Dawn of the Dead.” But the thing is, that was no coincidence. The title an homage to Dawn of the Dead, and at times, this movie serves as a direct spoof of all the zombie movies from the 70’s. Still rolling your eyes? Baby, that was the cherry on top of a heavily-iced fruit cake, and we haven’t even scratched the surface of this diabetes-inducing icing.

Now, let’s talk about what makes this movie stand out. Special effects alone, this movie is streets ahead compared to some of the zombie movies that hollywood is churning out nowadays (I’m looking at you, World War Z). For a good chunk of movies that come out of the sad pit called Hollywood, excessive CGI (computer-generated imagery) comes off as the heart and soul of these movies. That’s not the case with Shaun of the Dead. Granted, the movie did come out in 2004. Nonetheless, the guts, the stunts, and the practicality with props makes this movie a jolly good time to watch. And here’s the kicker: the zombies are secondary for this movie, the jokes are top priority.

What holds this movie in high esteem among critics is that humor. The jokes come in various forms: puns, slapstick, visual jokes, cultural referencing, parallelism, etc. Not only that, but the jokes and the movie itself are both self-aware, and it’s a joy to see these comedic jabs fly left and right. In turn, you get to see the jokes connect to all sorts of mediums, may it be music, movies, or even the people behind production. It’s almost like the movie has come to life as that one drunk uncle who spills all sorts of funny stuff at your 7th birthday party, except this time, the party doesn’t get ruined, and everyone actually laughs. What I’m trying to get at is the fact that the spectrum of the jokes here are bound to appeal to a very wide range of audiences. It’s one of those movies that you can watch on a sad and lonely Friday night over and over again and still find new jokes and easter eggs every time you watch it.

Another thing that works very well here is the chemistry between the cast, particularly between Pegg and Frost. If anything, these two stand out the most during this movie, and basically serve as the bread and butter for this film. The energy and soul of this movie comes from the bromance between their two characters, along with both actors’ flawless joke deliveries and genuine chemistry. The ability of Frost to play a dimwitted man-child is so convincing that at times  it’s a little tough to tell if he’s acting or not (And he definitely was, as he took on a more serious character in the movie ‘The World’s End’– the third installment of a trilogy named as the ‘Cornetto Trilogy’, which includes Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz, all of which stars both Pegg and Frost, and is directed by Edgar Wright as well).

To tie this review up in a nice little ribbon, I’ll be reviewing the other movies that are part of the Cornetto Trilogy sometime this week in order to give Pegg, Frost, and Wright the proper credit that they deserve because they are what One Direction is to a pre-pubescent, except in this case, I’m the prepubescent.

This concludes the first part of this month’s movie review. If you have any problems or concerns, please feel free to contact me via my pager. Until then, bye!