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28 Weeks later

May 18, 2007

28 Weeks later depicts the US Army in all its brash, incompetent glory.

This is the sequel to Danny Boyle’s 2002 Brit zombie horror, 28 days later, and its even better than the original. 28 days was a great film – most notable for its eerie shots of deserted London streets, as the entire population is wiped out by the Rage virus.

Part of what made the movie powerful was its political relevance – the Rage virus is created by the military looking for a new weapon, and tested on monkeys; it is released by animal rights activists.

As the title suggests, the sequel is set six months later. The survivors of the outbreak have survived quarantine and the US army has taken control. This is where it gets interesting:

Zombie sci-fi as analogy – the film quite succintly describes US military operations, the frat boy hubris resulting in colossal miscalculation, overkill and disaster.

Remind you of anything?

There’s even a Green Zone – the Isle of Dogs, in the financial district (and Omphalos of the British Empire, if the Psychogeographical Association is to be believed).

While showing the humanity and courage of individual soldiers, the command structure is over confident and out of touch, and doomed.

I liked this one better than the first one. I felt even more topical, giving Londoners a taste of life under the yankee boot. The action sequences are excellent and there are some real scares along the way, as well as enough gore – check out the helicopter zombie decapitation – to please horror fans.

Maryhill’s finest, Robert Carlyle stars, and Imogen Poots‘ spectral beauty is perfect for the role.

Anyway, there’s plenty more reviews here.

And since I’m on the subject of movies, I also saw Black Snake Moan, which was a lot better than I expected. Named after a 1927 song by Blind Lemon Jefferson, maybe the best thing about the film is its sweaty seething soundtrack.

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