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:: 28 Weeks Later

28 Weeks Later is the sequel to 28 Day Later, released in 2002, which outlined the scourge of a mysterious and incurable virus which ravages the population of England. The next installment of the story, 28 Weeks Later, begins with Don (Robert Carlyle) and Alice (Catherine McCormack) scraping together a meal in a country cottage with several other people who are in hiding from the infected persons who roam the countryside. We are informed that their two children are on mainland Europe attending a school camp at the time of the virus breakout. Missing her children terribly, Alice responds to a knock on the door at the heavily fortified cottage and allows a young boy into the relative safety of the house. Unfortunately, the boy has been chased by a group of Rage virus sufferers who are now alerted to the presence of uninfected and therefore desirable human flesh in the house. Bloody chaos and mass carnage ensues as the inhabitants of the house meet their gory demise. Don manages to escape, watched by his terrified wife who is under imminent attack, who stares down at him from an upstairs window as he runs across a field in what we assume is an attempt to lead the monsters away from her and the house. However, this is not exactly the case.

Despite its abundant gore and horror, 28 Weeks Later is quite thrilling and adrenalin-pumped in most parts. Aided by a thumping soundtrack and rapid fire editing, the film visually and aurally captures the frenetic, panicked mood of the few uninfected folk who are trying to escape the virus. Robert Carlyle (who must have had great fun working on this film)is equally believable as concerned husband, doting father and villain. The heroes of the film (played by Rose Byrne and Jeremy Renner), are part of an American force who have cordoned off a safe area of London, which is virus free. Both actors put in a regulation turn as earnest, concerned soldiers who stop at nothing to protect the two children who have since returned from Europe. The children are adequately played by Imogen Poots and Mackintosh Muggleton and the scenes where they are pursued by a specific zombie-like creature are sufficiently scary.

All in all, this isn’t a bad film as far as zombie flesh eating flicks go, although the blurry, dark, settings remove any specific detail from the attacks, despite the MA rating, which should allow us to see all the horror we can handle, to match the slurping and gnawing sounds of feasting monsters. All that was missing was for the infected to have their arms outstretched screaming "brains” although the infected are not too fussy about what they bite into and the traditional zombie food-lust has expanded into a revised menu of arms, skins and hair. They also don’t seem to mind the odd bit of eye gauging even if it is considered playing with your food.