Wednesday, June 06, 2007

28 Weeks Later... whatever

So I finally got around to seeing 28 Weeks Later. Even though it is not a zombie film (because, as I've outlined before, the infected are not actually dead, or rather undead), I figured it deserved a closer look. (Slight Spolier Warning Here) The first film, 28 Days Later, was pretty good, not because it dealt with zombies, but rather because it dealt with the problems that arise from structural breakdowns in society, and the inherent flaws in human behaviors. (This is also the same reason the malls didn't work in previous films in which they were used as strongholds. Not because of architectural flaws but rather human flaws). As a result, what could have been a slash 'em/eat 'em film was a surprising look at what defines us as human, and how easily that line is blurred in a chaotic situation.

Unfortunately, none of this nuance was present in the second film. There were some interesting concepts that were introduced, particularly the idea of a genetic anomaly that can adapt the "rage virus" (couldn't they have changed the name to something less stupid-sounding?) allowing the individual to continue to behave normally, but isolating them because of the disease they carry. However, this idea is merely a thinly-disguised plot device to give the characters motive to defend the main characters (they're already the only children... do you really need another reason?). The film just ends up being a countdown to evacuate the city. I'm sorry to say that Resident Evil:Apocalypse already covered this territory, and 28 Weeks Later made no attempts to improve on this drivel. The real tragedy is that the movie started off with serious emotional weight... namely the moral question of whether or not to "save yourself". There was such promise that this movie would live up to the precedent set by 28 Days Later, but instead this anticipation makes the whole experience all that much more disappointing.

Of course, there is always the possibility that Resident Evil: Extinction will have some redeeming qualities, but I wouldn't hold my breath.


Anonymous AngelaB said...

I felt the same disappointment in the "weeks" film that you did. There was so much territory to mine there with survivor stories, the father saving himself ignobly, the political decisions to move people into an area devestated by a virus, etc. Instead, it was a "father must kill children" story, waiting for the inevitable pandamonium and gore, and by pass the intellectual drama. It wasn't awful, just disappointing.

11:28 AM  
Blogger Cori said...

I agree with you both. I was excited to see this movie being a fan of the 28 days. only to really be let down. the begining to me was one of the better parts of the movie. Maybe I have problems way beyond help but, was it me or did these people accept that every thing was okay too fast. I think I would have been walking around thinking okay he could turn, she could turn ... what can I use or how can I escape. They just to go on with everyday life knowing that just across the bridge all is as 28 weeks before. The storyline to me could have been a side story and have a bigger one going. I was disappointed all of the happenings to just end like it did, very sad. ---- Just my outlook on it.

3:34 PM  

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