A washed-up musician teams up with a teacher and a kids show personality to protect young children from a sudden outbreak of zombies.
Dave and his girlfriend are a textbook toxic relationship, so everyone within hearing range is ecstatic when Dave leaves to go sleep on his sister’s couch. Faced with newfound freedom and extremely low personal motivation, Dave is—oh, how to put this kindly—a steaming pile of hot mess. One morning, he drops his five-year-old nephew off at school, and he’s instantly smitten with Felix’s kindergarten teacher, Miss Caroline.
I suppose I can’t blame him, because Miss Caroline is played by the incandescently gorgeous Lupita Nyong’o, and Miss Caroline is basically the most perfect teacher ever. But the man isn’t fit to spit-shine her shoes. He cons his way onto a school field trip just to be closer to Miss Caroline, but as luck would have it, there’s a zombie outbreak at the random American army base next door*, making Pleasant Valley Farms the first stop on the buffet.
*I love that the movie, which is set in Australia is like, yes, let’s blame this cock-up on the American military, because of COURSE they’re experimenting with zombies. And it’s not even the first time, because the soldiers who show up to contain it are like, “Is it the fast or the slow ones this time?”
I haven’t seen Alexander in anything else, but he did a good job as foul-mouthed, deadbeat, washed-up musician Dave. He’s a right shit for a while, but he slowly wins you over as he starts to grow a conscience and develop a sense of compassion. Good for you, Dave, for doing the bare minimum.
I had to watch this movie as soon as I saw the poster. Miss Caroline can do it all: play the ukulele and sing T-Swizzle like no one’s business, keep a class of concerned children calm, and behead zombies with ease. Her backstory was also hilarious. Is there anything Lupita can’t do??
Olaf would NEVER. Josh plays children’s TV celebrity Teddy McGiggle on an Australian tour who unfortunately (for them) gets stuck with Miss Caroline’s class. He’s a foul-mouthed sex addict who hates children, and I imagine Josh must’ve had a blast.
Why do I think it’s so cute when little kids dress up as Darth Vadar and pretend to use the Force? This little actor is a star—he was super, super cute whether he was quoting his uncle Dave’s definition of “douchebag” or saving everyone with his knowledge about tractors.
Couch-Sharing Capability: High
I’ve got a high horror tolerance, but I think even your weenier friends should be fine with this movie, as it’s too campy to be scary and there’s relatively little gore aside from the zombie makeup and some people splattered with blood. It’s absurdist and very Australian, so you gotta watch with people who appreciate this kind of unexpected and sometimes inappropriate comedy and aren’t afraid of strong language.
Recommended Level of Inebriation: Guzzle Some Mouthwash…
…In honor of Teddy, who is desperate to stay drunk while stuck in the farm’s gift shop with a bunch of five-year-olds. You could probably get relatively hammered and still enjoy this movie since the plot isn’t that deep, but you should pay attention to get maximum enjoyment.
Use of Your Streaming Subscription: Excellent
I don’t have a lot of distinct memories of the movie, but do you remember that mid-2000s Paul Rudd and Sean Patrick Scott comedy, Role Models? I feel like this echoes similar themes about useless dudes who shouldn’t necessarily be good with kids, but are…and now with zombies. It’s got some surprisingly heartwarming moments paired with great situational comedy that kept a smile on my face all the way through the Hanson-filled end credits.