YMMV / 28 Days Later

  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Is Major Henry West really a Manipulative Bastard, or is he a good man driven insane by the situation surrounding him?
    • The rest of the soldiers too. Are they really driven mad and gone monstrous enough to rape innocent women? How many of them would have actually gone through with it? Some theorise that they may have raped Selena but would have stopped short of raping Hannah too. Notably one of the soldiers is seen shaking his head sadly as they leave Hannah and Selena to change.
  • Awesome Music: "In the House, In a Heartbeat," a steadily increasing anxiety attack of a song that perfectly matches the climax.
  • Broken Base:
    • Go up to a group of fans of this movie and ask one simple question - 'is 28 Days Later a zombie movie?' Then stand back and watch the ensuing punch-up.
    • The third act revolving around the soldiers. Some fans hate the fact that the film takes a break from the infected to focus on Jim trying to stop Hannah and Selena from being raped - while others feel that it's a great direction to take the story in. A large amount of Danny Boyle's films - The Beach, Slumdog Millionaire, Sunshine feature a seemingly insignificant plot element coming into the forefront to be the main conflict of the third act - so fans can't agree on whether it works or not.
  • Cue Irony: The scene where Jim and Selena celebrate with Frank and Hannah? It was shot on the day of the September 11th terrorist attacks. Danny Boyle lampshaded how strange it felt for them to shoot an uplifting scene on such a day.
  • Ending Fatigue: For "surviving the apocalypse" movie fans, this movie starts off great but then makes a hard left midway through, sticking the main characters with the soldiers who take the forefront as antagonists and carries a different tone to match.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Selena's cold and cynical attitude is explained in a backstory that Naomie Harris and Danny Boyle came up with together: she had to kill her whole family in one afternoon, including an infected little brother. Knowing this makes her reaction to Frank's death even harder to take, as she's suddenly going through it all over again.
    • The start of the third act's conflict revealing that the soldiers are planning to rape Selena and Hannah out of desperation. Jim is horrified that desperation would drive them to do such a thing. Then once he's nearly been executed, he himself has to resort to brutal murder to stop the soldiers - showing that he's Not So Different.
    • One of the soldiers at the dinner scene optimistically says that they'll have eggs again when it's all blown over. He and the rest of the soldiers die that night, so that was probably the last meal they had.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: There is something heartwarming about three then-unknown actors playing people trying to survive in an After the End scenario - now with the hindsight that all three are now established in the film business.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Major Henry West reveals that he put the announcement on the blockade solely to attract female survivors - and that he's going to allow them to gang rape Selena and Hannah. This of course solidifies him as the new antagonist.
  • Retroactive Recognition: The film's four leads went on to bigger things.
    • Cillian Murphy is now known as Scarecrow in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. He also played Robert Fischer Jr., the physical MacGuffin of Inception, Jackson Rippner from Redeye, Damien O'Donovan from The Wind That Shakes the Barley, Pieter in Girl with a Pearl Earring, Capa from Sunshine... let's just say that while role of Jim didn't made him a star overnight, it still kick-started his career, as he received a big push after 28 days later.
    • Naomie Harris played Tia Dalma in the second and third Pirates of the Caribbean films. She portrays Moneypenny in Daniel Craig's James Bond films (specifically, Skyfall and Spectre).
    • Brendan Gleeson (the father who joins the first two midway through the film) is a well-respected character actor whose first major role was in Braveheart and went on to play Alastor 'Mad-Eye' Moody in the Harry Potter films and Ken Daley in In Bruges. Gleeson, an Irishman, also played Winston Churchill in the HBO TV movie Into The Storm.
    • Christopher Eccleston (who was also featured in Danny Boyle's film Shallow Grave) went on to play the Ninth Doctor and is known as this for British audiences/Who fans. Americans would know him as Destro in the GI Joe live-action film, Claude from Heroes, and Matt Jamison in The Leftovers.
  • Ron the Death Eater: Some fans blame the activists and only them for the virus getting out. While they do share a lot of blame, they're not the ones who created the virus. And as stated below, the scientist doesn't exactly do a good job of explaining why they shouldn't be let out. At that point, the activists only know that animals are imprisoned to be tested on.
  • Spiritual Licensee: 28 Days Later is a pretty good adaptation of Day Of The Triffids, don't you think?
  • Too Soon: A few viewers were offended by the shot of the notice board at Piccadilly Circus, depicting the missing persons fliers. They felt it was too similar to what had happened during the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Danny Boyle later said had the movie been shot after the attacks, he wouldn't have put the scene in.
  • What an Idiot:
    • The activists who free the monkeys in the lab at the beginning. The scientist even tries to warn them that they shouldn't do that, but of course they do it anyway. Especially the girl who releases the monkey, who is "thanked" by being bitten and becoming the first human victim of the rage virus. Even if they weren't infected, the activists just freed them without any form of protection. Did they intend to carry wild animals with their bare hands?
    • While we're handing out signs: The researcher who couldn't come up with a more convincing explanation for why they shouldn't be let out of the cages other than "Rage". "Oh hey, they're carrying a highly infectious and dangerous disease we're studying" might have been just a wee bit more convincing.
    • Jim wanders off from the group into a restaurant when they stop to get gas. Selena reminds him they have enough food, he sarcastically says he's looking for cheeseburgers - but he ends up getting attacked and having to kill an infected child.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/TwentyEightDaysLater