After the disappointment of The Beach, Danny Boyle went back to the drawing board, back to genre and turned out this lo-fi, low budget masterpiece. 28 Days Later… is a mishmash of classic sci-fi recalling the likes of The Day of the Triffids, The Death of Grass and I Am Legend, it’s a film written by an author (Alex Garland who would go on to be integral to some of the best recent sci-fi cinema) and all the better for it. Like a lot of great sci-fi it’s also a ferocious and smart movie where the quiet moments pack just as much punch. World War Z might have given us the zombie plague as a tidal wave (and Boyle’s film overflows with great images) but the scene where a character recounts the story of a train station being overrun by infection is just as compelling… which is no mean feat considering that the best cinema is usually ‘show’ not ‘tell’.
The sequel, 28 Weeks Later, is a different type of film and, although not quite as good, is as great an example of the ‘again but more’ method of sequeling (?) as Aliens is to Alien.