Shaun of the Dead
A flawless romantic zombie comedy
Horror and comedy have crossed paths in the movies many times over the years. Most of them fall into well-deserved obscurity. Two stand out in my mind as masterpieces: Dr. Strangelove and Evil Dead 2. It’s time to add another title to that list; Shaun of the Dead.
Shaun has a day to prove to his girlfriend that he is not a total loser, and he blows it. Instead, he ends up getting drunk and commiserating with his roommate Ed at their favorite pub, oblivious to the blaring news reports and military vehicles and sirens streaming past outside.
Eventually, current events become too real to ignore, and Shaun and Ed realize they’re living in a zombie movie. The two zombies that wandered into their yard wouldn’t let up until Simon and Ed used a shovel and a cricket bat to kill them. It’s kind of thrilling, like their video game, but it’s also kind of sickening.
One of the hallmarks of a good horror film — including Romero’s original zombie films — is that it reveals humanity’s reaction to horror. Romero’s Dawn of the Dead was a biting, satirical look at the growing materialism and mall culture of the 1970s.
Shaun of the Dead says that this generation can’t be bothered with current events; it’s somebody else’s problem, and besides, my girl just dumped me. It’s not so much that Shaun’s generation is selfish or shallow (although there’s probably some of that too), rather it’s that they assume they can’t change the world. News is what happens to other people, important people. Clerks and the unemployed just don’t feel empowered enough to be a part of the world.
Shaun also makes the point that many of the lower-paid workers in Western cities are practically zombies anyway. Demeaning, unimportant jobs leave them numb, and all some employers want is a body without a soul or a brain to get in the way of work, work, work.
Shaun of the Dead is not the funniest movie ever, nor is it the scariest. But within the multiple boundaries of a “rom zom com” (romantic zombie comedy), Shaun of the Dead is flawless. (M. Mapes, Movie Habit)
Shaun of the Dead
Mon February 21, 2005, 7:00 & 9:15, Muenzinger Auditorium
UK, 2004, in English, Color, 99 min, Rated R • official site
10 films for $60 with punch card
$9 general admission.
$7 w/UCB student ID,
$7 for senior citizens
$1 discount to anyone with a bike helmet
Free on your birthday! CU Cinema Studies students get in free.
Pay lot 360 (now only $1/hour!), across from the buffalo statue and next to the
Duane Physics tower, is closest to Muenzinger. Free parking can be found after 5pm at the meters
along Colorado Ave east of Folsom stadium and along University Ave west of Macky.
Park elsewhere and catch the HOP to campus
International Film Series
(Originally called The University Film Commission)
Established 1941 by James Sandoe.
First Person Cinema
(Originally called The Experimental Cinema Group)
Established 1955 by Carla Selby, Gladney Oakley, Bruce Conner and Stan Brakhage.
C.U. Film Program
(AKA The Rocky Mountain Film Center)
First offered degrees in filmmaking and critical studies in 1989 under the guidance of Virgil
Created by Suranjan Ganguly in 2003.
C.U. Department of Cinema Studies & Moving Image Arts
Established 2017 by Chair Ernesto Acevedo-Muñoz.