Monday, 28 September 2020
28 Weeks Later
Written by Sandra Fitzpatrick   
Monday, 14 May 2007 00:00
After last weeks big budget bomb Spiderman 3, I thought it was time to take in something a little different. Something less commercial with a little more grit and edge, a film that not only feeds the brain but feeds on my brain. And nothing chows down on grey matter quite like a good zombie movie!

28 Weeks later is the highly anticipated (at least by fans of the walking dead) follow up to one of the smartest and coolest horror movies of the last ten years. 28 Days Later delivered on almost every level with memorable visuals, smarts, story and more than its share of thrills. The sequel is cut from the same cloth and offers more of the same, which in this case, is a very good thing.

Part two picks up approximately where the first film left off. With the RAGE virus spread throughout England, pockets of uninfected humans are still in hiding. Don (Robert Carlyle) and his wife have found refuge in an old farmhouse, grateful that their two children are safely out of the country. Their relative safety is sacrificed when a pack of “the infected” come upon the farm. I don’t want to give too much away, but this chilling opening scene is the stuff of nightmares! I was white knuckled, slack jawed, on the edge of my seat, and any other clichéd horror reaction you can think of!

Fast forward 28 weeks and the infected have died out due to starvation. The US military has taken control and special operations units have been sent in to clean up and supervise the delicate process of repopulation. Don has managed to make it to one of the heavily guarded London Safe Zones. He is finally able to welcome his children home but has to find some way of explaining what’s happened to their mother. What he tells them sets in motion a chain of events that ultimately leads to a re-infestation of RAGE and an hour-long adrenaline rush for the audience.

One of the great things about 28 Weeks Later is that hidden amidst all the carnage is a fair bit of political subtext. With the daily bloodbath we are exposed to on the news each day war, disease and military occupation are subjects that hit close to home. What makes these movies great is that they examine how people might truly react in extreme, albeit fictional, situations. After all, playing on people’s real life fear is what true horror is all about.
The film style remains much the same as the original despite a new director at the helm. Co-creator Danny Boyle passed the gauntlet to Spanish director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo. Many impressive shots of an abandoned London add to the atmosphere, but a few too many frantic strobe-light effects make it a little confusing at times. I like to call these moments the “Zombie Cam”. These speedy flesh eaters aren’t your regular run-of-the-mill shuffling undead. 28 Weeks Later is one hell of a thrill ride and not for the queasy with the amount of blood and flesh that flies!

This is one sequel that lives up to expectation. I predict it will be one of the best surprises we’ll get all summer. For full-on savage fun, I give 28 Weeks Later 8 out of 10 stars.