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2002

Cillian Murphy as Jim

Naomie Harris as Selena

Brendan Gleeson as Frank

Christopher Eccleston as Major West

Directed by Danny Boyle

 

Synopsis:  a new virus is infecting people at an alarmingly fast rate.  This is the story of the few who managed to avoid the virus as they struggle against societal norms, and of course the infected, to remain alive and hopefully get out of the UK.

Ohmygoodness.  I can’t believe I forgot about the walking tour through London!  I’m such a travel junkie.  I want to live in England, at least near London.  The first sequence is heaven.  Especially since there’s literally NO ONE around.

So this movie is great fun.  I love that the infected are the speedsters of the zombie species.  I mean, come on—just because the person is technically dead doesn’t mean that the body can’t move faster than a lumber, right?  And no arms propped up as they stumble, either; what was the point of that?  To keep the zombie from running into other zombies?  Because clearly, their living prey is much faster than they are, and unless they lost their minds completely, would not just walk into a zombie.

But I digress.  The movie.  Yes.

The cast is fantastic.  I adore Cillian Murphy.  His character goes through some pretty serious growth throughout the course of the movie.  His lines get better too; I think his first 11 are “Hello” with different inflections.  Brendan Gleeson is terrific, Chris Eccleston is totally gone.  Very well acted.

The music is perfect; it underscores the desperation felt by the characters, and it lets us feel the urgency to every nighttime escapade.  The soft playing of “Abide With Me” as the first trio walks through the abandoned city is a dirge for millions, and it’s very moving (no, I didn’t cry.  Cut me a little slack, huh?).  And the Christmas carol playing in Frank’s apartment gives us the sense of the ridiculous, how the survivors are trying so hard to have some normality and it becomes more than a little creepy.  Very effective.

Danny Boyle did such a good job with his still cameras.  The first few minutes of the film, after London is emptied, look so disturbing that you can really feel that something is wrong in the state of Denmark, and it’s all because of the camera angle.  Everything is so distorted that you get a sense of the extreme unreality of the situation.  Hats off, sir.

And, of course, the brutality of survival.  That’s the truly scary part of this film.  What could the characters be thinking?  I’m so lucky to have avoided infection?  Then it becomes, how the HELL do I KEEP avoiding infection?  What do I have to do to live?  Can I live with myself after doing these things?  The fear is more psychological than anything.  Of course, the hordes of infected chasing you can put some serious stress on a person, as well.

Scream Meter:  4/10       28 Days Later will, at the very least, get your heart rate up a few times.

Buddy Meter:    5/10       If you’ve never seen it, see it with someone (or several someones) the first time.  It’s hard to shake some of the images after the TV is turned off.

Overall Rating: 7/10       This is a fun, scary, stressful movie.  And gross.  Who doesn’t love the gore?  Not this girl.  Bring on the spilling guts and spraying blood and the biting crazy people.

 

…Can you guess what’s coming next?…

…Wait for it…

…I’ll be right baaaaack…

MWAAAAAHAHAHA!!!

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