Shaun Of The Dead

Ryan Owen 16/05/2005

Rating: 4/5

The corpse of the movie genre known as Britcom (edgy romantic comedies with a nice twist and substantial injections of our humour) is now-and-then exhumed for some god-awful project rolling off the Richard Curtis conveyor belt. Only very infrequently, though, do we see something as refreshingly funny and original as Shaun Of The Dead.

With the cast of witty sitcom Spaced having a crack at this movie lark, hopes can rightfully get high from the start. We see some of the cream of British comedy chatting inanely in a pub, as the relationship between loser Shaun, his girlfriend Liz and idiot best friend Ed sparks off a fair amount of laughs. In fact, the first thirty minutes seem like an episode-long hybrid of its stars' shows: Spaced, Black Books And The Office. Which is fine, but as the film progresses, things get creepier as the zombies are slowly introduced, until one of the living dead is attacked with a Dire Straits record and a surprisingly gruesome horror element manages to up the appeal and turn it into the British Evil Dead 2. The gag rate thankfully stays consistent even as the movie flicks the horror switch, and even as the gore is frequently splattered, there's enough comedy to keep it enjoyable.

Shaun Of The Dead runs rings around any other recent Britcom (or, for that matter, zombie movie), and it's relieving to see that some TV stars can make that transition to the world of the silver screen. Here is an innovative creation from warped and reliable minds that hops between genres to make great, popcorn-fuelled entertainment