Sunday, December 7, 2008

10 Minutes of Terror-28 Weeks Later

Welcome back to another installment of Cins' "10 Minutes of Terror"!

And just to answer Stac's question; 10 minutes of terror should really have nothing in common with "7 minutes in heaven" ...unless you're into that sort of thing.

Today's ten minutes come from the sequel of a beloved film of mine. 28 Days Later is one of my all time favorite zombie movies. Yeah, yeah, I know there is the great debate of if its really a zombie movie or not. Purists say no no. I say it has all the qualities of a zombie movie, therefor in my brain, its a fucking zombie movie....well not a "fucking" zombie movie because that would be completely different and Stac would probably be writing an article on that instead of me.

But I digress.

28 Weeks Later is the sequel to 28 Days Later. By the time 28 Weeks later starts up, the infected have started dying off from starvation. The U.S. has occupied England and quarantined London, making it a safe place for non infected people to live again. I won't get into too much more since this isn't a review of the film. I will say that I feel 28 Weeks Later pales in comparison with Danny Boyle's stark, frighting, yet bizarrely optimistic original film. I found myself constantly comparing 28 Weeks to 28 Days and finding the movie just wasn't as good. Despite that, 28 Weeks Later is a great stand alone film and definitely worth the watch. It has some genuine moments of complete balls to the walls terror in it. so if you do watch it, try not to think too much about the original and you're good to go.

One of the best sequence in the film I believe is the first seven minutes.

Here's the Clip:

Now take a moment to catch your breath.

All set now?

Let's begin.

The opening of the film really calls back to the original filming style of 28 Days Later. The video tape quality, the jerky camera, and the fast cuts are all there. It is a bit cleaner than the original but it keeps the flavor well. What I love is the bleak, quiet beginning of the dinner with the survivors. You get just enough character development to feel involved with them before all hell breaks loose. I also love the use of light. As a viewer, you're convinced this scene is taking place in the evening until the door is is opened and that blinding daylight catches you unawares.
You're not only shocked by the attack from the infected but completely disoriented by the time of day.
The action is fast, bloody and unrelenting. Actually, its a great introduction on how all the action is in this film. It also gives you a good in site into what the film's mood is going to be. The moment Don leaves his wife Alice behind (Quite the dick move on Don's part) you know this film is not going to have that bonding camaraderie that 28 Days had. In 28 Weeks Later it's every man for himself. If you're not fast enough, you are zombie chow. The most chilling visual is the shaky long shot of Alice in the upstairs window banging on the glass then suddenly, she is pulled out of site. You never even hear her screams outside the house.

The opening scene is extremely breathtaking and happily enough, it is not the only good action sequence in the film. 28 Weeks Later has a little bit of down time and exposition after this, then BAM it starts on its downward spiral into fast zombie Hell. It doesn't give you a lot of time for character development but the pace of the film more than makes up for that.

Even if it doesn't have the emotional impact, great characters, or beautiful philosophy that 28 Days Later has, 28 Weeks Later is worth the rental fee for its action alone. Check it out if you have the chance. If for anything. to see this opening scene in better quality.


Stac said...

Wow, Don's a tool. That poor little boy. :( I noticed Alice suddenly disappearing, like you mentioned. That was eerie.

They changed the zombies, didn't they? Sine the infected weren't flesh eaters in the first one?

Cins said...

I know. Don's kinda a dickhead. He never gets into stereotypical horror film dickhead territory but he still does a few dick moves in the film.

The zombies now are a bit more "Tear them apart" style but I don't think they're flesh eaters. That one group swarmed on the one old lady but I think they were just riping her apart with rage. Though if they were eating flesh it makes sense since the infected are dying on starvation. I don't think they're very picky about their meals.;)

Big Winters said...

''Dons kinda a dickhead'', when the zombies come its every man for himself and you know it! Besides, if his wife didnt start looking for that kid they both would of made it.

As for the 'flesh-eaters', Im not sure they are, but again, this film mostly focuses on the intial attack, so theres no time for the eating.

I really like this film, and for some reason Im not that keen on the first one. I don't really care about peoples feelings, or love interests, so I got bored.

I think its a great, no frills, no tricks zombie film. I hope there is a next one, cos the the bit after the credits looks really interesting...

Metal Mikey said...

I agree that Don was a dick character... BUT he came off as a realistic character at the same time. I think it's because he was genuinely concerned about his children who were abroad, showing that he DID have a good side to his character. And while it was a SUPREME dick move to have fled away from the home, you have to admit that would be how MOST people might react to the situation. It doesn't make it right, but it is a life preservation instinct. *Shrugs* What bothered me most about the character was he somehow became "SUPER ZOMBIE" after his transformation. Did we REALLY need to keep seeing him return time and time again for the siege sequences?

Sigh... But I digress. I agree with the opinion that while "Days" had the better story and characters, "Weeks" had a TON more going on in the story, and some astonishing Horror/Gore setpieces. (I remember giggling with malicious glee over the helicopter sequence.)

Cins said...

M&M>> Agreed on many points. Like I said, he never really went into stereotypical horror film dickhhead territory. Overall the characters of Don, Alice, and the kids were really realistic and pretty heartbreaking overall. I think they were trying to be ironic with Zombie Don popping up all the time but I think it came across as cliched. I think his story ended as soon as Alice got her revenge.
Oh, and Helicopter Scene FOR THE WIN!!
Though nothing could top that scene in the Subway/tube station for me. BRUTAL!

BW>>Even though I liked 28 Days better I did think 28 weeks was a great film. Actually, I think the action/gore is far better in 28 Weeks. But being a chick, I tend to like all that character, love crap...oh and Cillian Murphy and his full frontal peen shot...I'm only human.
From what I heard through the grape vine, there will be a third film called 28 Months Later. I think THAT could be total awesome insanity. I'll do some digging. and see if I find any more info on it.

Jason Takes Portland said...

It was unfortunate that Don was put in that situation but I dont blame his reacation at all, the infected was between him and his wife/random kid. If the infected had attacked him instead do you think his wife would have jumped in there?

It seems that the infected are so over come by rage that nothing else matters, including the self preservation instinct to nourish themesleves. Though I have read speculation that the infected later in the movie are a mutation because they came from the woman who was a carrier, explaining why the infected Don seemed to recognize and follow his children. Though I might be over thinking this one...

Cins said...

JTP>>Despite me thinking he's a dickhead I do think the choice he made is realistic. Honestly, I think Alice would have gone back for him but then thats just the impression I got of her character.

I agree on the nourishment. If they were eating flesh it would be undertandable since they were so infected. I don't think they have a lot of though process and were acting completely on animal instinct. Not just animal instinct but one that is blurred with rage.
As for overthinking, considering the virus mutated enough to not effect certain carriers its possible that it mutated enough to cause the infected small abilities to think and comprehend.