28 Days Later (2002)
HALLOWEEN REVIEWS 2021
Director: Danny Boyle
Writer: Alex Garland
Stars: Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Christopher Eccleston, Megan Burns, Brendan Gleeson
A virus that causes its victims to fly into a murderous rage is released in London.
The country is devastated and a small band of uninfected survivors is left to struggle for their lives.
This film is most effective early on, but problems with the story swiftly accumulate to rob it of its power.
The cast is very good and scenes of star Cillian Murphy wandering through a deserted London and piecing together the truth from available evidence are very effective.
I was enjoying the movie a great deal at this point, but then the problems kept mounting.
Where were all the corpses?
How did a virus that claims its victim within seconds manage to spread throughout the whole country at all, much less within a month?
If the infected are so irrationally angry, why do they run in packs without attacking each other?
The last act of the film has our heroes seeking refuge with a group of soldiers who have descended to the level of murderous rapists.
Director Danny Boyle and screenwriter Alex Garland may have some interesting ideas about the fragility of our social contract but i don't think 28 days is enough time for people to sink that far.
If their point is that the military mindset is particularly susceptible to this avenue of degradation, then their viewpoint is not just overly pessimistic, it's a bit offensive.
It's not an interesting choice dramatically, either.
The film's climax is just a lot of running and shooting in which the infected are entirely beside the point.
Besides, George Romero did the whole embattled-military-outpost-coming-apart-at-the-seams-while-under-siege-by-zombies thing much more effectively about twenty years earlier in "Day of the Dead."
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