Simon Pegg & Edgar Wright
Simon Pegg as Shaun
Kate Ashfield as Liz
Nick Frost as Ed
But when I found out that Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright had written Shaun of the Dead I had to be first in line to see it. If SOTD was anywhere near as funny as the British series Spaced, which Simon and Edgar had also created, it would be one of the funniest films to hit the American screens. I was not let down.
The problem with writing a review on Shaun of the Dead is that it is so good that I want to tell the whole story and give you every reason why you should watch it. Knowing that I can not do that, I will try to condense as much as I can and force you go see SOTD for yourself. So here it goes.
Shaun (Simon Pegg) is your normal average everyday human male that has fallen into the humdrum routine of life. His best friend and room mate Ed (Nick Frost) is a lazy deadbeat that gives a new definition to the term slacker. His girlfriend Liz (Kate Ashfield) is the stereotypical female antagonist that wants Shaun to strive for greatness.
The problem is that Shaun has no ambition whatsoever. He is comfortable with the way things are. He does not have to think about much because nothing ever changes. I know you are reading this thinking, “So, what’s wrong with that?” I am glad you asked.
Shaun’s life is so routine, he does not notice the fact that over night London has become infested with flesh eating zombies! Once discovered, Shaun sees the zombie-fest as an opportunity to save the day and prove himself to Liz by standing up for himself for the first time in his life. Let the hilarity begin.
Shaun of the Dead is more than a great British comedy. It is a great zombie film made by two guys who love zombie films. There are so many references to former zombie films that I can not list them all here due to word count restraints.
Here is a couple from Night of the Living Dead just to wet your proverbial whistle. (Note: Purists should catch these without help from me.)
• The road sweeper operator’s radio plays a news bulletin about a space probe that entered Earth’s atmosphere and broke up over England.
• Shaun and Ed watch a news report in which the anchorman says exactly the same phrases as the TV reporter in NOTLD.
• Ed yells into the phone “Were coming to get you Barbara.”
Here is one that only a true “zombie master” would catch:
• Near the end of the film, Shaun and Liz are channel surfing and come across the “Fun Dead” program. The music that is heard in the background is the shopping mall music from the original Dawn of the Dead.
There are more references to Day of the Dead, Dawn of the Dead, the Evil Dead series and others. See if you can find them all as you watch. It is truly a pity that Hollywood cannot produce a comedy film of this caliber. Shaun of the Dead has comedy, social parody, horror, and yes, even romance. With great writing, directing, and acting, it succeeds on every level. It is a zombie feast the whole family can enjoy!