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28 Days Later

01/07/2003. Contributed by Geoff Willmetts

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video: 20th Century Fox 24238S. 108 minutes plus 25 ‘Making Of’ special. Price: £ 8.99 although this varies so shop around for the best deal. stars: Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Christopher Eccleston, Megan Burns and Brendon Gleesons.

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Animal activists break into an animal research laboratory to ‘liberate’ chimpanzees only to discover that the primates have been infected with a disease called ‘Rage’ in order to find a cure for the malady.

28 Days LaterToo late for them and the rest of the UK. In just little less than a month, you’re either infected, dead or both. Very few humans are left.

A drop of blood from anyone infected with ‘Rage’ is enough to infect you. There is no cure. All it took was 28 days...

Of the survivors, one is Jim, a recovering coma patient from a motor-cycle crash who wanders the streets of London looking for anyone, quickly realising things are never going to be the same again.

Joining up with a couple other people, they eventually make their way towards Manchester where a military unit is waiting who are just biding their time as well.

Looking at this film, it was easy to spot similarities to John Wyndam’s apocalyptical stories with even a side glance at John Christopher’s ‘Death Of Grass’ and even the film ‘The Omega Man’ - not so much the cause but in terms of handling the after-effects.

As such, there wasn’t much new that can be done differently although the ending used was far too light bearing in mind earlier parts of the film.

This doesn’t mean to say the film didn’t keep me riveted to the screen but it was more to see the consequences of the action.

With a relatively unknown cast, one couldn’t really speculate on survivors to the end of the film. They weren’t all unknown actors, Chris Eccleston has his following and if you remember the 90s revived ‘Tomorrow People’ series would have placed Naomie Harris as Selina.

Considering her attitude earlier in the film, it seems a shame that she was side-lined from exploiting it towards the climax instead of becoming more a damsel in distress.

Again, like ‘Dog Soldiers’ although the finance is from abroad, the production is British-based and as such, needs your support to ensure we get more home-drawn product for our people.

GF Willmetts

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