28 Days Later
What she said:
So, May 21, 2011, didn’t turn out to be our day of
reckoning. We bought our non-perishable cans of pork and
beans, sealed ourselves in our homes, and waited….and waited.
In a tribute to the crazy guy who predicted the end, we decided to
watch the thriller classic, 28 Days Later, the movie that
put Cillian Murphy on the map.
Murphy plays Jim, a bike courier who wakes up from a coma in the
hospital, 28 days after the outbreak of a “rage” infection.
The place is ransacked and empty. He wanders around the city
completely unaware of what is going on, searching for any signs of
life. That is when he first encounters the zombie-like people
infected with rage. Here are the basics of rage: it makes you
nuts, you want to eat other people, your eyes get all red looking,
and you vomit blood. Transmission can happen by being bit or
scratched by an infected, or by coming in contact with their blood
through an open wound or mucus membrane, like the inside of the
mouth or the eye. It’s pretty darn gross.
In a fight for his life, Jim happens upon a couple of other
remaining humans (there really don’t appear to be many left).
The movie follows their journey as they team up and search for a
place where rage have not yet reached. The question is, does
that place exist, and are the remaining humans more dangerous than
This film is classic Danny Boyle. It seems Boyle loves
camera shots of people running around. Several moments in this
movie make me think of Trainspotting and Slumdog
Millionaire. He’s also a master of unique
cinematography. 28 Days Later uses some brilliant
camera framing without making it feel forced, like in 127
Hours. The movie is a great thriller, but it’s also very
psychological. It makes you reflect on human nature,
particularly as it pertains to those in danger or facing
death. People will do some pretty bad things. The
question is whether or not these acts become morally acceptable in a
world in complete chaos.
Beware, the movie is for adults only. But it’s also quite
What he said:
The world may not have ended this past weekend, but we were still
in the mood for a good, old-fashioned apocalypse, so we decided to
revisit this gripping horror movie.
Talk about a dark, gritty, and amazingly realistic film, WOW! I
mean, when you consider that the movie is about flesh-eating people,
it is surprisingly believable. The Walking Dead (the TV
show, the comic is actually very good) wishes it was this good. It
seems like a pale imitation of the genre compared to 28 Days
Danny Boyle’s version of a zombie movie came out of nowhere and
made “zombies” (his creatures aren’t technically zombies, but I have
no time for nerdy arguments over semantics) cool again. This movie
is the reason zombies have resurfaced in
pop culture once again.
It is also responsible for kick-starting Cillian Murphy’s career.
Horror can come in all shapes and sizes. The genre can range
anywhere from comedy to social commentary. 28 Days Later is
more towards the latter. It is one of those movies that examines who
people are and what they are made up of. It takes a very hard,
realistic look at how people react to unspeakable circumstances; and
that isn’t always pretty. What I really love about this approach is
the sense of balance it brings. It is a great way to tell a story.
This movie does not hide the fact that we can be an ugly species.
Right from the get-go it is pretty raw. Take the opening scene for
example. A group of well-intentioned animal activists unknowingly
release an infected chimpanzee, which eventually leads to the
outbreak. Seeing what those scientists were doing to that animal all
for the sake of “science” made me angry. It confirmed things the
cynic in my already believed about humanity and also really bothered
me as an animal lover.
But throughout the film there are tiny glimmers of hope here and
there. There are certainly some “good ones” scattered amongst the
masses. 28 Days Later makes sure it communicates that
message very clearly.
If you are in the mood – and have the stomach for – a powerful,
gritty, drama set in the backdrop of a horror movie, then I highly
recommend this movie.
Rating: Thumbs up
This movie review was written for your reading pleasure on May