Zombieland is a grim film. It provides a commentary on society’s ills, and demonstrates humanity’s failure to manage an apocalypse of grand proportions contrasted against civilized utopian values. Cinematic enthusiasts do well by taking this movie seriously. Queue the vinyl record scratch. Yeah, right. Are you sure, we’re talking about the same movie here?
If you’re a new reader to Women Who Wow Wednesday, this series is not about stuffy interpretations of female movie protagonists. No, it’s about having fun! And what better way to have fun than to shine the spotlight on Wichita, the teenage Zombieland killer?
Let’s dispense with the pleasantries and go for the jugular. When we first meet Wichita (Emma Stone), she’s not a very nice human being. She lies, she tricks others into giving up what’s theirs, and she’s particularly sneaky. In fact, if I were a person of vulgar persuasion, I’d describe her as a female dog. But I’m not going to do that. I’d rather focus on the positive aspects of her personality than tear her down a few sizes.
How’s that for a rough start? So far, she doesn’t possess that many redeeming qualities to cry home about. There’s gotta be something that can spark an interest in appreciating why anyone would keep her around.
To her benefit, Wichita does like guns, I suppose. She sports a Mossberg 500 shotgun with rear and forward pistol grip, and side-saddle shell holder, which she utilizes throughout the entire movie. Her backup is a Walther PPK pistol. She uses it to threaten Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), a Twinkie-loving zombie-slayer, only after he threatens her sister Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) first.
What’s that say about Wichita if she doesn’t want to use any other gun other than the one she has? Yeah, she suffers serious trust issues. That’s what I thought too. However, I would add she’s faithful. Her commitment to one gun provides as an example that once she does trust someone, she’ll do anything to protect them. Even if it means losing her life while doing so. I guess she possesses some redeeming qualities after all.
Then there’s the matter of Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg). He’s always been the outsider. Never one appreciated except for when he gave Wichita his shotgun. They become close. She confides in him about knowing the rumor that Los Angeles being zombie-free is bogus. She keeps up appearances for her sister’s sake. He admires her and they become good friends.
Columbus realizes Wichita had to lie in the beginning to protect her sister. She didn’t know Tallahassee or Columbus. She had to trick them into giving up their firearms because if she didn’t, in her mind, who knows what would have happened. And if she wasn’t sneaky, how would she have known who the real Columbus was? That’s her side of it, anyway. Eventually she does reveal her real name to him.
You know what? I like Wichita. She’s solid. There’s no wavering with her. Either you’re for her or against her. None of that wishy-washy “oh, I broke a nail” stuff with her. She takes her hits and keeps going forward.
Have you seen Zombieland? What do you think of Wichita? Was it necessary she lie, cheat and steal to get her way?