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Thread: Simply great.... but is it a horror film?

  1. #1
    toshik Guest

    Simply great.... but is it a horror film?

    (spoilers herein)

    Personally, I don't really think so... It did make me jump a couple of times, and it is extremely creepy (in my opinion, much more so than, say, 'the Ring'). However, it is too smart to put it in the 'horror' category (but, again, it's just another stereotype).

    I think it is a film about people in a situation that is, to put it shortly, different from what we call normal. What would you do if the world suddenly came to end and you were one of the very, very few survivors? Would you lock yourself up in your apartment from all the dangers and wait 'till someone alive comes around or 'till you run out of food and water (just like Frank and Hannah did in the movie)? Or would you lose all your hope and have plain survival as your ultimate goal, like Selena? Or would you try to use that situation in your favour in order to get some more power, like the major? Or, perhaps, you would just get really confused and mixed up, like Jim.... Probably, most of us would do the latter. At least, I would.

    The thing that struck me most about the movie is how pessimistic it is. I have seen a lot of "smart" movies that did not have a happy ending ("28 days..." does), but that nevertheless were much brighter, much more optimistic than this one. The main "message" of the movie is as follows: there is no difference between the infected and un-infected (except for the way they look). We are just like zombies. Or even worse. At least, they have an excuse: they're infected. We aren't. And, yet, we kill. Remember? Selena killed Mark without hesitating right after he got infected. Jim killed a little boy (he was infected, but, still, he was a child). Soldiers - they gave me more creeps than the zombies did - executed one of them and planned to execute Jim for "cutting in on their actions" (that is, raping Selena and Hannah). And the rest of the world quarantinned England, despite the fact that there were survivors in there.

    That is exactly what the author of the novel, which the movie is based on, was trying to say: we, the humankind, are zombies. We are all infected - infected with consumerism, apathy, and ignorance. The zombie guys in the novel/movie are nothing but an overexagurated reflection of ourselves. We are as mindless and as cruel as they are.

    Now, the movie itself (aside from all the philosophy). Boyle kicked Hollywood's butt again. The direction is brilliant. The sequence of deserted London (low-budget my a**! How much did it cost to get all the people out of the Picaddilly Circus?) is simply ingenious. Indeed, there are similar sequences in 'Vanilla Sky' and 'Devil's Advocate', but this one beats them all. The camerawork is great too (although a lot of people at IMDB complained about it being shot with a digital camera.... well.... to hell with those people). And the score is awesome as well....

    To sum it all up, this movie is definitely worth seeing. However, if you think that "I know what you did last summer" was brilliant and "Dude, where's my car?" was smart... well.... you're better off waiting for... uh.... the new Freddy Krueger movie.

    P.S.: if you liked this film, you might wanna check out "The last man on Earth" (Italy, 1964... don't remember the director's name) and "Stalker" (Russia, 1977 [?], directed by Tarkovsky).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Utah, USA

    Horror in "28 Days Later"

    I found 28 Days Later a definite "horror" movie. With zombie-like creatures and death from a virus all around, this movie definitely meets the criteria of a horror movie. There were horrible monsters in the movie, there were horrible elements of implicit blodd and gore, there were the typical scenes from other horror movies, the killing of a father, anyone could be infected scenario. People have probably seen horror elements that were incorporated into this film somewhere before.

    What 28 Days Later accomplishes is making the horror genre into a more sophisticated film production using good cinematic elements of light and dark, camera techniques of blurring - grainy shots, of using a tight script that contained subdued, haunting implicit emotional psychological cues. Just because this movie isn't dumb and all blood doesn't throw it out of the horror genre. Just because we have a possible scientific (fictional) premise for zombie-land doesn't eliminate this movie from the monster category. Just because the psychological thriller of "Psycho" is introduced doesn't force us to jettison the label horror for this movie.


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