by Caitlin Marceau
Shaun Of The Dead (2004)
Directed by Edgar Wright
When we think of words to describe zombies, “funny” is usually the last one that comes to mind. But 2004’s Shaun Of The Dead, directed by Edgar Wright, is a movie that proves you can find hilarity just about anywhere. Simon Pegg and Nick Frost star as Shaun and Ed, two best friends who find themselves in the middle of an unexpected zombie apocalypse. While their first priority should be finding safety, the two of them—thanks to Shaun’s determination to get back together with the love of his life—find themselves on a long and perilous journey to, “Take [the] car. Go to mum’s. Kill Phil, grab Liz, go to the Winchester, have a nice cold pint, and wait for all of this to blow over.”
Shaun Of The Dead, the first instalment in Wright’s Cornetto trilogy, is—at its core—a movie about love and loss. Despite the comedic elements, the film is a touching story about a man trying to do right by his friends, his ex, and his family. It’s full of raw, heartfelt moments between Shaun and those he (mostly) loves, which adds to the tension in this legitimately scary film.
The work is also an impressive homage to zombie classics, like George A. Romero’s Night Of The Living Dead (1968) and Dawn Of The Dead (1978). Not only does it pay respect to a classic film title, but its use of practical effects and the iconic line “We’re coming to get you, Barbara,” pay tribute to the flesh eating flicks we’ve grown to love.
While it’s easy to disqualify a lot of horror-comedies as genuine horror, Shaun Of The Dead is filled with moments that are guaranteed to make audiences squirm. Full of gore, unexpected scares, and surprising warmth in a movie about the cold undead, this is a must-see movie for the Halloween season.