Box art for 28 Days Later

28 Days Later

An infirmary patient awakens from a coma to an empty roomin a vacant hospitalin a deserted city.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
3 out of 5
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Viral apocalypse, zombies, and terror. For adults.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this movie is very scary and deeply disturbing. It has extreme and graphic peril and violence. Many characters are killed. Characters use very strong language. There is frontal male nudity. Characters drink and take drugs. There are sexual references, including rape.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the different characters' responses to ultimate questions about the meaning of life. Who is responsible for what happened? What will the world be like 10 years later?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    reviews counted: 34
    see all 28 Days Later reviews
  • Audience


Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: I enjoyed watching this film, mostly because Murphy and Harris make such an appealing central couple to build a new world around. But nobody should mistake this for a killer-zombie movie with real soul.

- Andrew O'Hehir,, Saturday, June 28, 2003

Rotten: Detestable, not just because its action is so vile or its technique so crude, but because its moral imagination is so impoverished.

- Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, Friday, June 27, 2003

Fresh: The picture is twitchy and annoying, flecked with blood and half-digested ideas, and too much is left unexplained.

- Anthony Lane, New Yorker, Sunday, October 6, 2013

Audience Reviews

3 stars

"28 Days Later" came out in June 2003 at a time when zombies were considered "old news". They just weren't making good zombie flicks anymore, and then BAM! This came out of no where. Now this isn't so much a zombie movie, as it is an infected people, biting other people movie. This introduced "fast zombies", which seemed awesome, but faded pretty quick, as most people(myself included), like their zombies slow. If you haven't seen this, London has pretty much been destroyed and over run by a virus called Rage, which turns people into fast zombies. Jim(Cillian Murphy) wakes up in a hospital(Walking Dead stole this), alone with no idea what is going on. He then meets a couple people, and they try to get to safety. Along the way they battle priest zombies, a group of soldiers, and more zombies. It's slow, suspenseful, and has a few really great scary moments. Fans of horror/zombie movies should enjoy this even if it is a step below quite a few other classic zombie films.

- fb100000145236770, Friday, October 5, 2012

4 stars

28 Days Later isn't just a good horror movie but a decently constructed movie in general. It's smart and it has a political backstory, it's got an interesting plot, likable characters, scares, comedy and it's own unique style of atmosphere that will scare the hell outta you. In my opinion, it's better than Slumdog Millionare (also directed by Danny Boyle).

- aquateen2, Wednesday, February 1, 2012

4 stars

One of the better modern zombie films that aren(TM)t a retelling, adaptation, or have a comic book basis. This isn't exactly anything new or extraordinary, but was entertaining, and one could argue it also works as a coming of age or life changing story about a young man's abrupt evolution in demeanor in the face of a crisis. This film does show the beginning of the outbreak, the scientific aspects, and the wide spread of the disease and how the world reacts in the face of these atrocities; the panic, lack of emotion, and bottomless fear. The politics, military inclusion, and death toll are all emphasized in this unlike many of the Dead series of Romero fame. Those films better show a singular person's plight and response to what is going on around them with lack of information. This film does that well while also hinting towards the global response. Besides our characters usual situational standard, they also travel, and run amidst a group of wayward soldiers who have all gone mad with power. This is where I have a problem with the film. Zombie films are usual about the mass populous being zombie-like entities that follow the ways of what is popular, what is in the media, or advertising. While Night of the Living Dead didn't have a clear cut message, Dawn of the Dead was all about mall culture and the addictive power of buying. This one pulls into the moralistic message of the human condition, showing that without any sense of rule, of any law or order, man would break down and kill each other for survival. Looking over the alternate ending choices I would have much preferred one of them, much bleaker and understandably chosen. I did like the actual choices made, the stellar direction from Danny Boyle, and the great cast choices of usual creeper Cillian Murphy, later Pirates of the Caribbean witch Naomi Harris, 7th Doctor Christopher Eccelston, and lovable Brendan Gleeson. The story is kind of humdrum, but the actual action, the thoughtful ways they survive and ways they are saved and save each other really resonated. I especially didn't like the romantic element they thrust in for good measure and Jim's ensuing storyline and character development. Still, this really is one of the best zombie films of all time.

- FrizzDrop, Thursday, January 5, 2012