Zombieland Invents Fun New Ways to Head-Bash the Undead

Illustration for article titled Zombieland Invents Fun New Ways to Head-Bash the Undead

Two clips from Zombieland demonstrate what this foul-mouthed zombie comedy is all about: finding new and bizarre ways to slaughter the shuffling (or, in this case, sprinting) hoardes. And the Zombieland cast shared their favorite methods, from chainsaws to pianos.


So, what does it take to survive an offbeat version of the zombie apocalypse? Detachment from your fellow survivors, for one thing. Emma Stone, who plays a survivor called Wichita, explains that the characters call each other by the names of the cities where they're from, so they won't develop warm fuzzy feelings for one another and hesitate to deliver the brain-bashing blow when one of them is bitten.

You've also got to be fast on your feet and use whatever is at your disposal to effect zombie slaughter. Each member of the panel share their favorite zombie-killing method:

Woody Harrelson:


Emma Stone:

There's a part in the movie where I butted a zombie in the back of the head with my shotgun, and he fell 80 feet to his death.

Jesse Eisenberg:

The end of the movie takes place in this theme park where I ran past this ride that's like this huge swing, knowing that if I pass it at a certain speed and time, the zombies that were chasing me would get hit by it, and it's awesome.

Director Ruben Fleischer:

My favorite was in the first trailer where we did the "Zombie Kill of the Week" and we dropped a piano on a zombie's head


And, in the first two clips from Zombieland, we get a foretaste of Eisenberg and Harrelson's zombie-killing prowess:

We're in Columbus' apartment, where there's a frantic knocking at his door. "Please open up," a girl's voice pleads on the other side. "It's an emergency."


Columbus, in voiceover, muses that it's a miracle. The voice belongs to his hot neighbor in apartment 406.

He opens the door and she runs in, inordinately grateful. She sits on his couch while he pours her a mug of liquid.


She takes a sip, then looks confused. "Mountain Dew."

He's sitting next to her, visibly trying to look and sound as casual as possible. He nods. "Code Red." Looking to prolong this unexpected social contact with a pretty girl, he asks her what happened.


She explains that she was coming home from the bar when a raving homeless man suddenly ran out of the darkness and attacked her. Columbus is appropriately sympathetic. "I haven't even told you the worst part," she says. "He tried to bite me." She is scared and embarrassed and Columbus assures her that what she's feeling is normal, "That's the right kind of fear." She snuggles up to him and closes her eyes. "You know," he thinks, "set aside the feverish homeless cannibal, and I was living the dream."

But Columbus is in for a nasty shock when he wakes the next morning. The girl is still there, but she's no longer the vision of unattainable hotness he passed in the hallways. Instead, she's a sore-covered, blank-eyed, mouth-foaming zombie. And, as he discovers when he runs away from her hungry bite, she's the fast kind of zombie.


Columbus races into the bathroom, but the zombie girl literally manages to get her foot in the door when he tries to close it. The door crushes her ankle with a sickening crunch. "I am so sorry," he tells her, as if she's a living girl and he's just spilled beer down her shirt. He lets go of the door and as she rushes in, he pulls down a clear plastic shower curtain and holds it over her face. It's a shame zombies don't breathe, because soon enough, she's pierced the plastic with her black, oozing tongue, looking like she's going for a grotesque kiss. Once Columbus realizes the shower curtain is a bust, he grabs he lid from the back of his toilet and uses it to smack her across the face.

She's momentarily stunned, and Columbus uses the opportunity to run back into the apartment, shutting the bathroom door behind him. But Zombie Girl has motor skills. She turns the door knob and is soon hot on his trail again, dragging her broken foot behind her. When she reaches Columbus, he hits her again, this time so hard that her neck twists to an unnatural degree. The scene freezes, and Columbus remarks, in voiceover, "That's got to hurt."


In the next scene, Columbus and Tallahassee are about to enter an undead-infested convenience store so Tallahassee can satisfy his Twinkie cravings. Before they go in, Tallahassee turns to Columbus and tells him, "It's time to nut up or shut up."

Columbus mentally notes that, "When Tallahassee goes zombie killing, he sets the standard for not to be fucked with."


Deciding music is the best way to lure the zombies out, he grabs a banjo and plays a few bars of "Dueling Banjos." Sure enough, a zombie comes straight at them, and Tallahassee breaks the banjo over his head. A second goes after Columbus, but Tallahassee grabs a baseball bat from one of the racks and casually kills the zombie with a single whack. "That was incredible," says Columbus. "I know," Tallahassee replies.

Tallahasse's muttering search for Twinkies is interrupted when they spy something more shocking than a zombie: a real live girl, about Columbus' age, asking for help. "What are the odds?" Columbus marvels to himself. "Another marriageable girl to bring home to the folks."


"Please come," she pleads. "It's an emergency." She leads them back into the store room, but before he follows, Columbus props open a side door. "Always know your exit," he advises.

In the store room, the girl and Tallahassee are facing a second, much younger girl who is sitting on a table. Tallahassee makes introductions, "Columbus, Wichita, Little Rock." Then he pulls Columbus aside and explains that Little Rock is Wichita's sister. "The younger one's been bit, but try not to freak them out."


"She's just looking for a way out," Wichita tells him, looking pointedly at the shotgun in his hands.

Columbus protests, "She's just a little girl."

"Don't talk to me like I'm a child," Little Rock snaps. "I made a promise. We already said our goodbyes."


Columbus trains the shotgun on her experimentally, but as it's clear he won't take the shot, she suggests Tallahassee do it instead. Tallahassee agrees and, though he hesitates a bit, lifts up the gun and takes aim.

"Wait!" Wichita says suddenly. "I'll do it."

Glad to be relieved of child-killing duties, Tallahassee hands over the shotgun. Wichita checks the barrel. "Do you need help?" Tallahassee asks.


"Yes," Wichita replies and she whips around, aiming the gun at Tallahassee and Columbus. She demands their weapons, their food, their car. Little Rock hops down from the table and stands beside her sister, beaming.

"What's that on your arm?" Tallahassee demands, nodding to her alleged zombie bite.


Little Rock licks her arm. It's salsa. Habanero style.

Columbus asks why they have to steal their stuff, why the four of them can't just pool their resources. "You made the mistake of trusting us," Wichita tells them. "We won't make the mistake of trusting you."



Aidan_ III: The Return

Oh my god, this movie just looks better and better every time I read about it.

Also, the whole thing about them referring to each other by place-of-origin? I did not pick up on that. I thought it was just a weird coincidence of names. Very clever.