Thursday, January 26, 2012

28 Weeks after that thing that was bad happened.

I thought 28 Weeks Later was going to have as much bite as Will Smith's lyrics.(sample lyrics: Ciga-cigar right from Cuba-Cuba, I just bite it, It's for the look - I don't light it) But lo, I BE WRONG!
I remember liking it when I saw it in theatres and eventually my standard line on it was "the first 15 minutes are worth it." I said that line for so long I began to believe it. But lo AGAIN! I was also wrong. I recently picked up the DVD on the cheap and settled in one hungover evening to watch it by myself. My roommate made an appearance towards the end of the film, entering on our apartment as she often does - phone to ear. It was the first time she put her phone and asked, "what are you watching?"

The answer, dear readers, is I was watching one of the most emotionally traumatizing horror movies I can imagine. The movie does a great job of creating really likable and intelligent characters so when they brutally start dropping like flies (often in an instantaneously made decision for the greater good) but it helps the film feel brutally real. This version of London feels eerily reminiscent to that of Children of Men where decisions that affect the characters we like are made with little to no emotion.

In the 28 weeks since the first 28 days, the American military has moved in and have asserted control over the Rage virus outbreak. They are beginning to integrate civilians back into London slowly and with a lot of control. Needless to say, the Rage virus gets out again. Let's just say it's a man's fault. ANYHOOZLE, a group of the most attractive and charismatic people (army and civilian types) try to get on the last transport out of London before the military bomb the bejesus out of the UK.

It's typical stuff, right? But you've got a really amazing cast that bring this story to life and makes you care. You've got Rose Bryne (intelligent), Jeremy Renner (charming), Robert Carlyle (despicable) and Imogen Poots (naive) making up the bulk of the leads and it works. The script is clear and sharp, making the set up relatively painless and even reminds one of the American occupation of Iraq. If victory was declared, why were they still there???? The control mixed with the smugness of the American forces is horrific enough without all the zombies making a reappearance. (between you and I, I think we were a few scenes away from a zombie Guantanamo)

It's a truly worthy sequel that in some ways, I like better than the original. There, I said it. I believe it's the most under-appreciated film of the '00s. If you haven't seen it, do! Now!

And yes, those first 15 minutes are still not to be missed.

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