Movie review

Now showing in Taos: ‘Zombieland: Double Tap’

The undead remain second banana to post-apocalyptic hipster comic actors

By Rick Romancito
tempo@taosnews
Posted 10/20/19

Because part of "Zombieland: Double Tap" involves a pilgrimage to Graceland, I thought it might be fun to rattle off a bunch of Elvis-related non sequiturs ...

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Movie review

Now showing in Taos: ‘Zombieland: Double Tap’

The undead remain second banana to post-apocalyptic hipster comic actors

Posted

Because part of "Zombieland: Double Tap" involves a pilgrimage to Graceland, I thought it might be fun to rattle off a bunch of Elvis-related non sequiturs like: This sequel was a hunka-hunka burnin' corpses or you ain't never caught a rabbit and you ain't no fiend of mine. But, no.

While it does have its moments, it’s not exactly the comedic answer to Rick Grimes' existential angst amid the "Walking Dead with gruesome chuckles. Instead, under director Ruben Fleischer, it has become a series of sitcom style episodes involving a rag-tag family of sorts cracking hipster wise at every post-apocalyptic opportunity to redefine their newly emancipated-from-law-and-order-and-social-convention lives.

As the main members of this dysfunctional little family unit: Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), Wichita (Emma Stone), Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) and motor-mouthed Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) pick up several years after we last saw them barely escape being zombie chedder-peppers and now have taken up residence in the White House. Their names, if you didn’t catch that, are stand-ins for their real names because in this zombified landscape, anyone might die at any minute so it’s best if you don’t know their real names lest you get, well, attached.

But attached is what Columbus really wants, because after years holed up inside the presidential manor he’s fallen head over heels for Wichita. To prove it, he’s found the fabled Hope Diamond and is ready to pop the question. But, Wichita is well aware of her little sister’s need to grow, experience new things, and maybe find a boyfriend. When the zombie apocalypse happened, Little Rock was 12 years old. Now, 10 years later, she’s tired of being treated like a little kid.

So, before you can say Blue Suede Shoes, Little Rock takes off on her own, prompting her sister to go after her — not to bring her back, but just to help her stay alive. In the meantime, Tallahassee, who has not let his thirst for offing the undead in the most gruesome ways possible to falter, accompanies Columbus to a local shopping mall for supplies when they encounter another healthy human: a somewhat bubble-brained Valley Girl-type named Madison (Zoey Deutch). Suddenly, Columbus is no longer lonesome tonight. But, when Wichita suddenly returns for more guns, well, you know, suspicious minds.

As I said, a series of sitcom style episodes ensue, some which involve that trip to Graceland where they encounter a hard-headed woman named Nevada (Rosario Dawson) and the strangely doppelganger-ish Flagstaff and Albuquerque (Thomas Middleditch and Luke Wilson). Little Rock also finds a boyfriend, a vegan hippie dude named Berkeley (Avan Jogia). Oh, and a word about the zombies. It seems they’ve been evolving. This, of course, leads to our stalwart heroes giving them names: Big, slow-witted ones are called “Homers”; smart ones are called “Hawkings”; silent but deadly ones are called “Ninjas”; and, scary almost indestructible ones, are called “T-800s.”

If you remember the first movie, you know what happened to Bill Murray (who played a fictionalized version of himself). Well, he’s back. But, you’ll have to wait until the end credits to find out why. This sequel offers the same level of comedy-horror thrills as the first, but don’t be cruel, there’s probably another down at the end of a lonely street at Heartbreak Hotel. Ok. I’m done.

Tempo grade: B

“Zombieland: Double Tap” is rated R for bloody violence, language throughout, some drug and sexual content.

It is showing daily at Mitchell Storyteller 7 Theatres, 110 Old Talpa Cañón Road. For tickets and additional information, call (575) 751-4245 or visit storyteller7.com.

Also showing in Taos

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil

MPAA rating: PG for intense sequences of fantasy action/ violence and brief scary images.

Storyteller 7 Theatres

In Disney's "Maleficent: Mistress of Evil," a sequel to the 2014 movie which itself was spun-off from the 1959 “Sleeping Beauty” animated film, the evil sorceress and her goddaughter Aurora begin to question the complex family ties that bind them as they are pulled in different directions by impending nuptials, unexpected allies and dark new forces at play.

The years have been kind to Maleficent and Aurora (Elle Fanning). Their relationship, born of heartbreak, revenge and ultimately love, has flourished. Yet the hatred between man and the fairies still exists.

Aurora's impending marriage to Prince Phillip (Harris Dickenson) is cause for celebration in the kingdom of Ulstead and the neighboring Moors, as the wedding serves to unite the two worlds. When an unexpected encounter introduces a powerful new alliance, Maleficent and Aurora are pulled apart to opposing sides in a Great War, testing their loyalties and causing them to question whether they can truly be family.

Film directed by Joaquim Rønning also features Michelle Pfeiffer as Queen Ingrith, plus Chiwetel Ejiofor, Juno Temple, Lesley Manville and Imelda Staunton.

It is showing daily at Mitchell Storyteller 7 Theatres, 110 Old Talpa Cañón Road. For tickets and additional information, call (575) 751-4245 or visit storyteller7.com.

Where’d You Go, Bernadette

MPAA rating: PG for language, thematic elements, some suggestive content and brief smoking images.

Taos Community Auditorium

Based on the runaway bestseller, this film written and directed by Richard Linklater from Maria Semple’s best selling novel is described as an inspiring comedy about former architect Bernadette Fox (Cate Blanchett), a loving mom with a loving husband and brilliant teenage daughter who becomes compelled to reconnect with her creative passions after years of sacrificing herself for her family.

When Bernadette suddenly disappears without a trace, her concerned family sets off on an exciting adventure to solve the mystery of where she might have gone. But, it’s Bernadette's leap of faith, which takes her on an epic adventure that jump-starts her life and leads to her triumphant rediscovery.

Co-stars include Kristen Wiig, Judy Greer, Steve Zahn, Laurence Fishburne, Billy Crudup and Megan Mullally.

This film will be screened at 2 p.m. Sunday (Oct. 20), and at 7 p.m. Monday through Wednesday (Oct. 21-23) at the Taos Community Auditorium, 145 Paseo del Pueblo Norte. For tickets and additional information, call (575) 758-2052 or visit tcataos.org.

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