One of the joys of being me is that I have access to all types of things the Great Unwashed does not. One of those things is called a “television.” And on this “television” there is a local D.C. news and entertainment show that, if watched on the proper day, will give viewers the ability to acquire free movie passes for some movie that isn’t yet available to the masses. Usually I don’t go see these sneak-preview movies because they’re on Tuesdays or Thursdays and I’m too lazy to motivate myself. Plus the lines are long, sneaking in alcohol is a bitch and the theaters are all far away, (okay, that’s all a lie, I just can’t get a date!)
But this week the ticket was for 28 Weeks Later. Which, many horror fans will recognize as the sequel to the 2003 British smash hit 28 Days Later, which chronicled the struggle of snaggle-toothed British zombies as they yearned to leave England (can you blame them) and find a decent, non-boiled meal.
That movie was different from normal zombie movies because these zombies were really pissed off. Regular old George Romero zombies just shuffle along, bump into things and generally act much like reality t.v. fans. But the British zombies are much more into cardio. They run everywhere and spend the majority of their time puking up blood and attacking windows, (honestly, I counted 5-7 total minutes of screen time in 28 Weeks Later, focused on window head-banging.)
Anyway, the star of the first film wasn’t too keen on reprising his role for the sequel, so they brought in Robert Carlyle, the most forgetful James Bond villain ever, (go ahead, without using IMDB see if you can even name the Bond movie he was in. I’ll wait.) as the new main character. Here’s the story, it’s quick and easy, then I can get on with the rest of the review, which is really about the people in the theater with me. Carlyle plays Don, a guy who survived the initial wave of zombies by hiding out in a farmhouse with his wife and a few other random nobodies that quickly go the way of Star Trek Red Shirts. During an attack, Don is the only one able to survive, (by abandoning his wife and not even looking back twice as he ran away. A true inspiration to all men in relationships everywhere, who secretly wish that they too could just up and run away from their women one day and not look back.)
Luckily, when the zombies were taking over society in the first movie, Don sent his kids to Spain, (including his daughter, played by the suicidally named Imogen Poots. Poots? Are they serious with that name? What, was Fart already taken?) After the American military, (the good guys?) show up and make England safe for everybody again, they start bringing back civilians. First up, Don’s kids. The movie could end right here (20 minutes into it) and everybody would be fine, but no. The kids suffer from the same mentally crippling disease that all WPs suffer in horror movies, Investigatius Stupiccocus, otherwise known as “Hey, What’s That?” disease. They wander around London and find their mom, alive and well, (alive at least) she had been bitten by the zombies, but didn’t transform. The military sees this as the key to curing the disease that turned everybody into zombies in the first place, (actually one military officer does, the others see it as a reason to kill a bunch of people). Sadly, the lady is still a carrier of the “Rage” Disease. One thing leads to another and everybody becomes a zombie again. But this time it’s different. Why you ask? Because the good ole’ U.S. of A army is there with a plan! Kill everybody! Obviously, Bush and the rest of his staff of geniuses formulated this plan.
So, the kids with the antibodies or whatever hook up with a special forces dude and run around the streets trying to escape the zombies and the American military, (hey, who doesn’t these days?). The movie ends with stuff happening, but I’m not too sure because by that point my rage at the rest of the audience had achieved Michael Douglas in Falling Down levels of frustration. I now understand his motivation for walking around with a bag of guns.
Michael: So Joel, what’s my motivation in this movie? I mean, why am I so pissed off at everybody?
Joel Schumacher: Imagine this, you just spent the last two hours in a theater with people who won’t shut the hell up, crying babies that parents won’t take out of the room, cell phones going off even though they should be on silent, that one guy behind you who thinks he’s a film major and has to dissect everything very loudly to the person next to him and the other one guy who yells things out at the screen because he thinks he’s funny. Ok?
Michael: Oy Vey!
Damn this is long. Okay, let me finish this off now. The movie wasn’t that good. There were way too many close ups of peoples eyes, too many shaky hand-camera shots, (Dramamine may be required for some viewers) and much of the action was in the dark, blurry or too up close to actually see. Rent it when it comes out, but don’t bother in the theater. In fact, never bother with theaters again, too many inconsiderate people. I recommend illegally downloading movies off the internet, it’s easier and has that element of danger, which makes it fun!Ok. Tune in next time when I review…28 Months Later: The Tom-Kat story.