If you enjoyed the first Zombieland, you will almost certainly enjoy Zombieland: Double Tap. Is there much more you need to know?
Sure, cultural tastes can change over 10 years. But zombies and postapocalyptic settings are still popular. And Zombieland still feels fresh, despite being older than you might remember, because of how it approached such a familiar story. Its lighthearted tone, quippy dialogue, outlandish gore, clever video-game and memelike graphics and likable characters have all returned for this second go-around.
Double Tap presumably picks up a few years after the first film (10 years don’t appear to have passed in the story) with Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg), Wichita (Emma Stone) and Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) hunkering down in the White House. Despite being abandoned, it’s still the White House and thus the safest place our gang can take shelter and call home in a zombie-infested world.
Yet, as you might expect among four people stuck together for a long time, everybody’s getting a little sick of each other. Columbus and Wichita are bored in their relationship, Tallahassee has wanderlust and Little Rock is tired of being the little kid and wants to find friends her age.
Little Rock’s decision to run off with a hippie poseur and find zombieless sanctuary brings the other three back together to rescue her from certain annihilation. But just as the lead characters have evolved, so have the zombies. The newest version of the undead predator is stronger, faster and much more difficult to kill.
A handful of new characters are introduced to prevent the story from feeling too familiar and predictable. Airhead Madison (Zoey Deutch) adds comic tension to the mix with her ditziness, and Nevada (Rosario Dawson) brings another hardened badass who should have had a bigger role in the story. But the introduction of Albuquerque (Luke Wilson) and Flagstaff (Thomas Middleditch) as doppelgängers for Tallahassee and Columbus is an amusing idea that goes nowhere.
Ultimately, the real fun and reason for this sequel to be made come from the quirky quartet we enjoyed in 2009. That reunion, along with grisly, creative, fast-paced dispatching of zombies makes this film worth watching.