Hey everyone! This month’s blind spot, Shaun of the Dead, is a film I have been wanting to check off my list for a while. I didn’t see it when it came out because I was on my mission in 2004 and didn’t watch movies during that time. Plus, I am admittedly squeamish when it comes to violence and I knew this was a bloody comedy. However, the whole point of this series is getting me out of my comfort zone and I did enjoy Anna and the Apocalypse, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and Warm Bodies so I figured let’s give it a go.
Well, maybe zombie romances are my thing because I quite enjoyed Shaun of the Dead. In fact, I have long felt Edgar Wright was a little overrated (thought his Scott Pilgrim and Baby Driver were just ok and really didn’t care for Last Night in Soho). Now after seeing this film I feel like i finally get it and the appeal of what he does.
The story centers around the title character Shaun (Simon Pegg) who begins the day getting dumped by his girlfriend Liz (Kate Ashfield) and putting up with his leach of a friend Ed (Nick Frost) who has been slumming on Shaun’s sofa for 5 years! To say Ed is high maintenance would be an understatement. Then a little thing called a zombie apocalypse happens to complicate Shaun’s life. Despite having been dumped Shaun goes to save Liz along with her friends and his Mum (Penelope Wilton- who is always great) and his step-dad Phillip (Bill Nighy). Together they make an eclectic team that is figuring out how to fight off zombies along the way.
You have to give a lot of the credit for Shaun of the Dead to Pegg who pulls of the comedic and more emotional moments quite well. He also has an easy chemistry with both Frost and Ashfield and the film has a nice message about the importance of friends even if they drive you crazy at times. Shaun of the Dead is also paced very well. The characters are constantly either fighting the zombies or figuring out a way to keep them out of whatever structure they are in. Shaun in particular is scrappy and figures out creative ways to kill the zombies- at one point they try to use his record collection to kill them without much luck.
There is also a very effective scene using Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now” to perfectly punctuate the action. Wright is excellent at using his soundtrack to add energy and spice to his films and this no exception.
I actually think Shaun of the Dead would make a good date movie. It has a friendship and romance at its core and has humor and action to entertain everyone. I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would so if you can handle an R rated film (for language and violence) I’d say give it a watch!
8.5 out of 10