Film Review

28 Days Later…

Danny Boyle is one of the most diverse directors in film today. Many people have just been turned on to him after the critical and financial success of Slumdog Millionaire, which was released in 2008, but Boyle’s been at it for over a decade. He’s directed astronauts in Sunshine, heroin addicts in Trainspotting, and a 7 year-old who discovers the meaning of human ethics in 2004’s Millions. But it was 28 Days Later… that gave Boyle the U.S. box office success that had been eluding him through his first four feature films. With a budget of only $8 million, 28 Days Later… turned a $45 million dollar domestic box office revenue. Through the film’s life, it’d always eluded me until I was fortunate enough to see this gem this weekend.

The story begins in a testing facility, where three activists try to free monkeys that are being experimented on. Unfortunately, they accomplish this task. 28 days later, we are in an abandoned hospital when when see a lone patient, Jim (Cillian Murphy), wake in an untterly confused stupor. He wanders through a completely empty London for a few minutes, before he encounters a church filled with, not so blessed, patrons. The shots of him walking through a lonely London are mesmerising, and very authentic. Boyle states in an interview that he would like to thank the London police marshals for shutting down London for him. And I’m glad they did, because it was one of the most realistic apocalypse scenes ever captured on film.

Jim’s travels lead him to find Selena, who is one of the few remaining non-zombies in London. She explains to Jim, who has no idea what has happened since he was sent into a coma by a car accident, that a virus called “Rage” had originated in primates and spread to humans, causing them to inflict harm upon the uninfected. Jim’s skeptical, but a few choice encounters settle his doubts.

Wonderfully shot, as every angle and color was carefully chosen to imply both apocalypse and disarray. If you’re looking for a scare as well as something to provoke your thoughts, 28 Days Later… is the perfect film.

SCORE: 85

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