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DVD Review: 28 Weeks Later

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I have to admit, when 28 Weeks Later came out in theaters I had no interest whatsoever in seeing it. To me it seemed like one of the sequels that should never have been green lit. But I also didn’t like 28 Days Later as much as most people. Now that 28 Weeks Later is on DVD, I figured I would give it a try.

I am shocked to admit it, but I like 28 Weeks Later a lot more than 28 Days Later. For starters, it is a completely different genre. Instead of being a horror, it is much more of an action/thriller. There aren’t really moments where something unexpectedly pops out at you as in the first movie. But what I really appreciate is 28 Weeks Later doesn’t have the creepy, crazy rape thing going on in it. I don’t really like sexual assault in my entertainment. And it certainly wasn’t necessary in the first movie.

28 Weeks Later picks up with a few survivors holed up together to hide from the dangers outside. Unfortunately, some of the infected find them and it seems only Don escapes. Cut to 28 weeks after that and some people are slowly moving back into London, under an American-led NATO group. Don’s two children are two of the other survivors (they were abroad during the infection) and they believed their father when he tells them that mommy had been eaten until they happen to find her. Strangely, she doesn’t look much worse than you would expect from someone who has been fending for themselves for 28 weeks. And if you only learn one thing from watching 28 Weeks Later, let it be that kissing someone with a horrible disease is a very bad idea.

The chase is on after the deadly kiss. The zombies are faster and deadlier. They don’t simply bite their victims but go for ripping apart the arteries. These zombies are full of rage and very little else. Yet this time around, the infected maintain some element of humanity deep within.

The movie also blends genres in its visual appearance. At times it looks like your typical hit movie, while other times it looks more like a photojournalist has documented an actual catastrophe. The blending of styles works well to give 28 Weeks Later a grittier feel. 28 Weeks Later also looks more at the choices we make in the face of disaster. The line between saving lives and exterminating the deadly infection is a blurry one with some questionable responses. Yet those responses are what drive the movie.

Special features are par for the course on DVDs these days. 28 Weeks Later includes commentary with the director, some deleted scenes, the theatrical trailer, and trailers for a few other movies. “Code Red: The Making of 28 Weeks Later” is a mini-featurette with a look at how the sequel was made, from the original inspiration and how it evolved into the film they made. Next is “The Infected” which is hopefully self-explanatory, but in case it isn’t, “The Infected” is a featurette looking at the infected extras in the movie. Finally there's another feature called “Getting Into The Action” and it details more of the actual action in the movie and the differences that set 28 Weeks Later apart from 28 Days Later. After these features are two looks at an animated comic book version of the story, “28 Days Later: The Aftermath Stage 1 Development” and “28 Days Later: The Aftermath Stage 3 Decimation.” They are an interesting take on the story but I haven’t any clue as to how many stages there actually are, or why only the first and third appear on the DVD.

The DVD is in English 5.1 Dolby Digital and in Widescreen. There are options for closed captioning, French and Spanish Dolby Surround with subtitles available in English or Spanish.

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  • Corey

    What were the trailers for other movies on the dvd? I saw one of them but I can’t remember the name of it. Thanks

  • George

    I want to know the name of the trailer that had vampires/sci-fi in it as well.

  • Neil

    That film is called Daybreakers. Release is due in September 2008. Cast is Ethan Hawke, Willem Defoe and Sam Neill

  • EF

    Actually I was wondering the same thing… the movie I remember was Day Watch not Daybreakers. But there was a second one I was to see too? Anyone?