Zombieland: Double Tap. Movie Review

I’m a big fan of the first Zombieland but was always hesitant about the idea of a sequel because I saw that failed Amazon pilot around the time it aired. There’s a discussion to be had about whether that pilot would have been better if they hadn’t recast the film characters but that’s not the point. After that Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick went on to massive success with the Deadpool films, director Ruben Fleischer has made nothing good in the 10 years since the original (culminating in the hilariously OTT disaster that was Venom.) Emma Stone went on to be one of the biggest stars currently working, and Jesse Eisenberg delivered possibly the worst performance of this generation in Batman vs Superman ( insert “Martha” gag here.) What did we get from this long in coming sequel
If there’s a perfect example of a sequel that’s decent enough and we’ll probably satisfy fans but doesn’t have a great deal to offer beyond more time time with this characters and universe it’s probably Zombieland: Double Tap. Don’t get me wrong it’s a lot better than it might have been (especially given Fleischers recent track record) and there are some decent laughs in large part because the film starts off pretty strong. That said a lot of it does feel like a creative team trying to recapture the lightning and in a bottle magic of first time around. This is perfectly encapsulated by the fact the films funniest moment is a mid credit gag that finds a way to crowbar in and reprise the one cameo from the first film that everyone remembers. It’s a really funny scene but its an obvious attempt to recapture the magic that does work but not as effectively as it perhaps should. This is a good metaphor for the film as a whole.
Zombieland: Double Tap is nowhere near as bad as it might have been. The formula and characters are there. I think the majority of fans will come away relatively satisfied. That said it doesn’t have magic of the first film and if it weren’t for its franchise associations it would be another generic but not unpleasant R-rated Hollywood comedy.
6/10

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