Clearly Zombieland is not the kind of movie Roger Ebert can sink his teeth into. "Vampires make a certain amount of sense to me, but zombies not so much. What's their purpose?" He asks, in his Chicago Sun-Times review, followed by other questions about the nature of zombies. "I ask these questions only because I need a few more words for this review," he explains. Here's one horror film that critics have taken to heart, probably because it's not so much a horror film but a comedy version of a horror film -- that kind that had its antecedents in Abbot and Costello Meet the Wolfman . "It's just wicked fun," writes Claudia Puig in USA Today. Kyle Smith in the New York Post praises it as "the funniest broad comedy since The Hangover . And if you thought the British Shaun of the Dead was the zombie comedy to end all zombie comedies, Gary Thompson in the Philadelphia Daily News is here to tell you that it was not. "Its Americanized mutation," he writes, "is an unexpectedly funny repatriation of the form." Woody Harrelson is receiving much praise for the comedic chops -- in both senses of the term -- that he displays in the movie. "Is there a cooler guy in the movies this minute than Woody Harrelson?" Roger Moore asks in the Orlando Sentinel.. And Mick LaSalle in the San Francisco Chronicle writes, "Harrelson is the best thing in the movie. Because Harrelson never tips his hand and shows the intelligence that guides his performances, he rarely gets the credit he deserves. ... He shows us the limits of the character's thinking, a totally distorted vision of himself and the world, and he's very funny." There's also a cameo appearance by Bill Murray. And, returning to Roger Ebert's filler conclusion "I will close by observing that Bill Murray is the first comedian since Jack Benny who can get a laugh simply by standing there."

02/10/2009