From side-splittingly hilarious to disgustingly gory, zombie kills are usually pretty spectacular and quite often make use of a wide range of unexpected tools. To celebrate the release of Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse, out on the 6th November, we’re taking a look at five of the funniest, goriest and – in keeping with the Scouting spirit – most resourceful zombie kills from our favourite movies about the undead. Grab your hedging shears, your vinyl collection and that stash of plastic carrier bags – they may very well come in handy.
- Zombieland, Ruben Fleischer (2009)
This film is packed to brim with ingenious and unexpected murder weapons, and the narrator even awards ‘Zombie Kill of the Week’ to Sister Cynthia Knickerbocker’s falling piano zombie trap. We’ll concede that it’s a brilliant kill, but for pure entertainment and imaginative tool use, it has to be Tallahassee’s supermarket killing spree to snatch the award. Using his banjo as a lure, he brings the undead shoppers into the open and goes all out with his collection of makeshift weapons. A baseball bat and a pair of hedging shears make a gory appearance, and the whole thing is just pure zombie-splatting fun.
- Quarantine, John Eric Dowdle (2008)
Found-footage horrors are now a mainstay of the modern horror genre, but the hand-held camera doesn’t usually get its own active role! In this remake of the Spanish zombie flick REC, TV reporter Angela and her cameraman Scott set out to shoot a piece on an LA fire station’s night shift. During the night, their shoot takes them to an apartment complex to respond to a medical emergency – when people start acting erratically and the building is put under quarantine, however, Angela and Scott are trapped inside and things become a lot more sinister. In a terrifying zombie attack, the camera-person-cum-monster-killer Scott must think on his feet and use whatever he has to hand. In this case, it’s the camera itself. As the camera slams repeatedly into the zombie’s face, her blood splatters the lens and the viewer is forcibly brought to the forefront of the action.
- World War Z, Marc Forster (2013)
When a sudden, mysterious infection strikes in this big-budget action-horror, the entire world quickly succumbs to the Zombie pandemic and it’s up to Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt), former UN employee, to find the solution. It’s when a stowaway zombie breaks free and infects the crew on a flight from Jerusalem to Cardiff that it seems as though it might be the end – until Gerry decides to detonate a grenade and brings down the whole plane in an impressive, explosive scene. The zombies are sucked out of the craft as Gerry clings on, and the plane crashes with only a few survivors. It’s a last-ditch, desperate move that saves him in the nick of time.
- 28 Days Later, Danny Boyle (2002)
Jim (Cillian Murphy) wakes up from a four week long coma in a deserted hospital, emaciated and alone. Unbeknownst to him, a highly infectious virus has ravaged the UK and he is one of the sole surviving uninfected. His most resourceful zombie kill comes when, wandering the desolate London streets, he happens upon an infected priest. He’s armed with nothing but a plastic carrier bag full of scavenged Pepsi cans and as the zombie staggers towards him, all he can do is swing the bag with as much force as he can muster and hope for the best – with pretty good results.
- Shaun of the Dead, Edgar Wright (2004)
When the world is overrun by zombies and you’re completely unprepared, what else is there to do but take the car, go to Mum’s, kill Phil, grab Liz, go to the Winchester, have a nice cold pint, and wait for all of it to blow over? Shaun of the Dead is a classic comedy horror chock-full of funny and unexpected zombie killing techniques. Honourable mention goes to the pub fight scene set to Queen’s ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’ that includes a set of darts as an ingenious weapon, but our favourite zombie kill has to be with Shaun (Simon Pegg) and Ed’s (Nick Frost) record collection. Watching them whip vinyls like Frisbees at zombies’ heads in the back garden is both surreal and intense, and captures the essence of the film perfectly.
Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse hits UK cinemas on November 6th