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Movie Review

Columbus may be a rule-bound neurotic with biceps the size of twizzle sticks, but he’s alive, doggonit! And in this apocalyptic world full of the walking dead, that’s quite a feat.

In fact, his life is pretty top-shelf in that respect.

He’s currently living in none other than the White House. Yes, that White House. I mean, why not? And he sleeps in the Lincoln Bedroom with his pretty-but-tough-as-nails girlfriend, Wichita, who’s as sly and hard-edged as he is soft and ticklish.

Sharing their spacious, well-appointed abode is Columbus’ best bud, Tallahassee. (Well, he’s Columbus’ only living best bud, anyhoo.) He’s a redneck guy who actually gets a kick out of massacring zombies with any vehicle or destructive blunderbuss he can get his hands on. In fact, it’s his favorite pastime, other than sitting in the Oval Office and puffing on left-behind cigars.

And then there’s Wichita’s younger sister, Little Rock. She’s a nice kid, but you can see she’s a little restless. She’d like to go and meet someone her own age to hang out with. But the pickings are pretty slim. Any teen guys these days would more likely eat you as a snack than take you out for one.

For that matter there’s a new strain of zombies popping up in the world. Some are slow and as dumb as a brick, dubbed Homers. But some are a lot smarter than your average brain-craving shamblers. Hawkings are zombies that somehow have gotten bright enough to make it past electronic locks and other complicated barriers. And the Ninja zombies are even stealthy in their brain munching kills.

It’s all a bit unnerving. And, hey, flat-out scary at times. But that’s the new reality that Columbus and his makeshift family are facing together.

One thing’s for sure: It’s not boring. I mean, it keeps the blood flowing … in one way or another.

Positive Elements

It’s obvious that the central characters care for each other. And they fight together, facing great danger to keep one another alive.

Even though he’s a pretty brusque guy who doesn’t share his feelings easily, Tallahassee looks upon Little Rock like a daughter. And he puts himself on the line to protect her and others.

Columbus even asks Wichita to marry him, even though his proposal sends her into a bit of a panic: “Married people only do one thing,” she replies. “Get divorced!” Eventually the two of them get married.

Spiritual Content

Tallahassee looks upon Elvis Presley in a reverential, almost spiritual light. He even calls him the “King of Kings” and he compares a road trip to Graceland to going to a holy land.

Tallahassee and Columbus meet a new girl named Madison who makes romantic gestures toward Columbus. When he blanches at anything happening between them, she asks, “Is it because of Jesus?” A young guy named Berkeley compares his pacifist ways to Gandhi.

Sexual Content

Little Rock’s top displays quite a bit of cleavage. Columbus and Wichita kiss. And though we never see them in a sexually romantic embrace, we do see her in bed. And she forces Columbus to cover Lincoln’s eyes (in a nearby portrait) before they have sex.

Later on, Columbus and Madison kiss and end up in the same bed. She pushes him down and straddles him (while clothed) before the camera cuts away. From an adjoining room, we hear them having noisy sex.

Tallahassee meets a love interest as well. He and Nevada kiss and we see her (apparently unclothed but covered) in bed the next morning. Later they kiss passionately while saying their goodbyes.

Tallahassee makes several jokes about Columbus’ love life and body parts. All four of the main characters end up in a fenced in compound called Babylon. The compound has two rules: No guns and no group sex. One of the guys there, however, repeatedly looks for any reason to break that latter rule (though we never see it happen).

Violent Content

If we were to address all the many bloody deaths and explosions of blood and guts on screen, the list would be very, very long. Suffice it to say that obliterating human-like things is the prime source of “entertainment” in this film. Literally hundreds upon hundreds of zombies get crushed and ripped apart in the goriest and most violent of ways.

Male and female undead are shot and stabbed in the eyes and mouth. Heads are hacked at with axes and blown off completely, and the remaining corpses run on with necks spurting. Eyes, arms and legs are ripped off or blown off. Backbones and necks are gruesomely snapped, and torsos explode in geysers of goo and entrail chunks. Numerous large explosions destroy scores of zombies and vehicles. In one scene, a monster truck rips its way through hundreds of zombies, crushing and mashing them into pulp.

A new super-tough zombie, dubbed the T-800, requires many explosive attacks to put down. We see Columbus and Tallahassee fight with several of them mano a mano—smashing through walls and windows. Repeated gun shots to the heads and bodies of these creatures send blood and chunks of flesh flying. In one case, Tallahassee ends the battle by gruesomely crushing a creature’s head beneath his boot heel.

We also see people bitten and then violently transforming into zombies. Living people are thrown around and thumped heavily in the head and torso.

Columbus also introduces us to Zombie Kill of the Year awards. These are incredibly messy showcased kills that pulverize or annihilate zombies in flashy, dynamic ways. For instance, someone chases zombies down and grinds them up with a huge hay baler that spews out blood-soaked bales with faces and body parts mixed in.

Crude or Profane Language

Nearly 40 f-words (including four paired with “mother”) and 10 s-words are mixed in with uses of “a--,” “d--n” and “h---.” God’s and Jesus’ names are misused a dozen times total (the former being blended with “d--n” on four occasions). We also hear several crude references to male genitals, and someone makes an offensive hand gesture.

Drug and Alcohol Content

After Little Rock meets Berkeley, she asks him if he has any marijuana; he holds up a huge baggie full of the stuff. They smoke and get high together. Tallahassee smokes several cigars. He drinks glasses of booze and swigs straight out of bottles regularly, as well.

Columbus and Wichita drink beer. As do others at the Babylon compound. A Christmas tree is decorated with empty beer cans. There are several jokes about drug use in the dialogue mix.

Other Negative Elements

Most every choice the heroes make in this apocalyptic world involves taking or using things that, in the truest sense, belong to someone else: stealing vehicles, cutting up paintings in the White House, destroying things with explosives, etc. But we’re not supposed to think too much about these activities since most people are dead anyway.

Projectile vomiting is part of a human transformation into a zombie. We see it happen repeatedly, partially played as a joke. There are lots of jokes made about Madison’s “airhead”-like ways. Tallahassee comments, for instance, that he isn’t all that worried about zombies killing her since they only want victims with brains, etc.


The ads for this Zombieland sequel crow proudly about the fact that this pic is stitched together by the director of Venom and the writers behind the f-bomb rat-a-tating, hero-dissecting Deadpool. That alone ought to give you a pretty good idea of the kind of chortle-over-flying-intestines stuff you’ll find sloshing around in this pic like an overstuffed bloodbag.

Is it funny? Sure, there are plenty of pop-culture quips and tongue-in-bullet-blasted-cheek winks flying around while things explode and ricochet, while brain matter smears across every surface. And the returning main characters are still relatively appealing in their own quirky gonna-kill-me-some-zombies ways.

But Zombieland: Double Tap goes nowhere and does nothing. It’s little more than a gory giggle-barf, set on déjà vu. If you’re looking for more than that, well, you’d best resign yourself to being disappointed. ’Cause this movie is a pointless joke with a crushed skull punchline: Like your average zombie, it doesn’t have a single reason for existing. (Except, of course, to relieve you of all that extra cash and time you don’t know what to do with.)

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Woody Harrelson as Tallahassee; Jesse Eisenberg as Columbus; Emma Stone as Wichita; Abigail Breslin as Little Rock; Rosario Dawson as Nevada; Zoey Deutch as Madison; Avan Jogia as Berkeley


Ruben Fleischer ( )


Columbia Pictures



Record Label



In Theaters

October 18, 2019

On Video

Year Published



Bob Hoose

Content Caution

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