28 Days Later is a horror, thriller film directed by Danny Boyle that in my opinion is one of best zombie style movies ever made. The film opens with a group of animal liberation activists breaking into a laboratory in Cambridge, England filled with caged chimpanzees who are infected with some type of virus known as Rage. In an attempt to release the chimps, the activists are brutally bitten and infected with the virus. 28 days later after the initial infection the main character Jim, a bike courier played by Cillian Murphy wakes up in a deserted hospital after a car accident. After leaving the hospital and roaming the empty streets of London searching for any signs of people he is suddenly chased by a group of the infected. Two survivors manage to save his life and he begins his journey of survival in the post apocalyptic England. With the help of some other survivors, a woman, a father and his teenage daughter they search for some type of cure and salvation to the virus.
Director Danny Boyle manages to capture a real sense of tension and realism in this film while avoiding an obsession with the infected people and focusing more on the characters and even more on the atmosphere. One particular thing I really liked was the look of the film.It was filmed with digital video instead of standard film which made the film look more gritty and rough instead of the standard Hollywood clean and perfect look. The film has a really desolate environment especially in London where Jim roams around tourist areas and intersections that are completely empty and quiet. The music was really well done providing a very tense feeling throughout the film and the occasional soothing but, mysterious music in between chaotic moments was a very professional and was a nice touch.
The pacing and character development was nicely done as well. The transition of Jim from a screaming and easily scared type of wuss to a tough killer that will do anything to keep himself and his friends alive was very interesting. The rest of the solid cast of Naomi Harris, Megan Burns and especially Brendan Gleeson also did their part for some good character development. The premise of the infected people not being zombies but, rather consumed with a rage to kill people and rip them apart is not super creative but, it works and it’s good to see something other than the overdone zombie premise. The most chilling part is that the infected people sprint and are very savage unlike the slow walking and dumb dead people portrayed in most zombie/horror movies.
28 Days Later has an original style for the typical horror,thriller zombie genre of films. It focuses on characters and an awesome atmosphere. Along with a great musical score and a sense of this really could happen, it really is a gem in this addicting genre of movies. If you’re looking for an original horror and or thriller film to entertain you I recommend 28 Days Later.