Zombieland: Double Tap (2019): ‘Back in the World of Characters’ – A Film Review

Zombieland Double Tap Film Still



Zombieland was a successful zombie comedy film based around a rulebook for surviving ‘Zombieland’, a term for earth after the zombie apocalypse, with stars Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin. It also featured a cameo from Bill Murray as himself, in one of his many self-referential, comedic performances. Poking fun at his celebrity stardom as he continues to do from film to film. It might have been 10 years coming, but the cult success of Zombieland was always going to implore a sequel. So, it is in 2019, that we’re treated to a continuation in Zombieland: Double Tap.

Zombieland Double Tap Film Still


The Build Up

The thrill of the characters and the star cast are on good form; we’re comedically treated to new ideas for the characters existing within ‘zombieland’. One of the first standard plot points takes us into familiar ground once again, giving them reason to take this into a road movie. Zombieland was always a road movie. It also takes on a standard new dynamic to the relationship in response to this. It causes the drama and starts the story. Continuing to develop the world of the characters and adding new jokes, whilst giving new environments for the characters to explore. The fun of Zombieland takes hold.

Zombieland Double Tap Film Still


Winding it Down

But… after a while, it dawns that plot points are standardized, as you would find them in so many sequels. Characters are contrived or relationship dynamic developments are similarly forced into the story whenever it is required. It’d be hard to know whether this sheer simplicity was done for the target audience (which would be insulting), or whether it was done for comedy (which misfires). This runs straight to the climax, which has some fun and spectacle, but not enough to stop you thinking about it and realising that it only makes sense to bring us such plot points or moments. In the credits we are treated to an action comedy piece with a surprise cameo, this almost functions better than the initial climax.

Zombieland Double Tap Film Still



It’s a sad realisation. The excitement for Zombieland and in seeing these characters again, initially taken from us by the prospect that this is a rehashed cash grab. There isn’t the need to do things in an exciting and well developed way apparently. We can just throw in all the characters and that will be enough. The standard sequel traps are here and they’re thick. It’s all too well known, not done well enough and it doesn’t bring the laughs it perhaps should. It’s characters alone that makes the film.



Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) and Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson) are brought back on the road when Wichita (Emma Stone) and Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) leave them. From here they find new characters, doppelgängers and new relationships to complicate their goal of reuniting.




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A Note on My Reviews

Please read ‘On Reviews‘ for a guide to how I write film reviews. Any spoilers are appropriately marked and, though I personally prefer to know little about a film before seeing it, there is a synopsis below the review for any who wish to see one.


Films Mentioned

Zombieland (d. Ruben Fleischer USA 2009)

Zombieland: Double Tap (d. Ruben Fleischer USA 2019)


Further Reading



Official Site

Premiere Interviews

Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg Interview

Rosario Dawson Interview

Behind the Scenes


Things You May of Missed

Why it Took 10 Years

Survival Rules and Commandments


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This was an analytical review of….


Zombieland: Double Tap (d. Ruben Fleischer USA 2019)

Zombieland Double Tap Film Still

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