Rated R for strong violence and gore, language and nudity.
Directed By: Danny Boyle
Written By: Alex Garland
Staring: Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Noah Huntley, Brendan Gleeson, Alexander Delamere, and Megan Burns
You were thinking that you’ll never hear another piece of original music ever again. You’ll never read a book that hasn’t already been written or see a film that hasn’t already been shot. -Selena
Four weeks after a mysterious, incurable virus spreads throughout the UK, a handful of survivors try to find sanctuary.
Danny Boyle takes us to a frightening new world where zombies aren’t just zombies, and the terrorizing possibilities of a dark future are not so impossible. His grotesque take on 28 Days Later is one of the most inventive perspectives into the horror film genre and made it the scariest and one of the most disturbing movies of 2002.
There is an element of realism added into 28 Days Later, that makes the setting even more palpable. The eerie aspect of an incurable, highly contagious disease taking over London and literally making it hell on Earth is absurdly creepy, but taking the element of first person, and Cilian Murphy’s character, Jim, awaking to a world he doesn’t understand is the perfect creation for a sense of solitude and fear. Danny Boyle acknowledges the fact that in our busy bee world, silence can be the most terrifying sound of all.
In Jim’s confusion, he searches threw an empty city that looks like it’s survived a hurricane or worse. He seeks refuge in a church only to find it is no longer a place to take solace. It’s also there he discovers he is not alone. From this point on the story and the character’s take a dramatic fusion into this new and shocking existence. Facing death in it’s most raw form, literally chasing you down, creates a nauseating suspense of what seems to be our stars inevitable future.
The isolation of the first half of the film is the best part. The feeling of hopelessness, but the drive of the will to live against a world that seems determined to suck that hope away makes the mood of the film even darker. When the second half of the story does take place, we get a From Dusk Till Dawn feel, where suddenly our main character’s are thrown into a situation where the nature of man is reflected on and the infected aren’t the only thing to fear. At this point the character’s are important to us and their survival is what we desire most.
Danny Boyle does not shy away from violence or gore, but he does not overuse it either. Unlike other “zombie” movies, the gore is not a part of the film we want, because it means the death of one of our main characters, so when it is used, or one of the main character’s does die, their death is even more disturbing.
28 Days Later haunted me for weeks, and still to an extent does. It was the movie that lured me back into the horror genre and reminded me that there still were thinking horror movies and not all of them focused on gratuitous violence or over the top comedy. Some movies were still made to scare you, and 28 Days Later was successful in it. It’s original perspective, the raw way the footage was shot, and the excellent performances made this a movie well worth watching, and one of my favorite in it’s genre. The Verdict? Probably my favorite twist on a zombie flick ever.