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The week’s critic wrangle: “28 Weeks Later.”

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For "I Don’t Want To Sleep Alone," "Brand Upon The Brain!" and "Day Night Day Night," go here.

+ "28 Days Later…": What initially looked like a write-off — a sequel in which neither the original film’s director or writer had any direct involvement beyond an executive producer credit, coming from Fox Atomic, whose titles thus far include "The Hills Have Eyes II" and "Turistas" and nothing else — is being heralded as a success and, possibly, that rare sequel that’s better than its predecessor. And what director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo has delivered is no feel-good flick: as David Edelstein at New York describes it, the film is "is blistering and nihilistic—a vision to reduce you to a puddle of despair… unlike the benevolent universe of Steven Spielberg’s War of the Worlds remake, this one offers little hope for survival. Parents go in an instant from protecting their children to trying to munch on them, and no government rescue is forthcoming." "28 Days Later was a tough and uncompromising horror film," adds Jeremiah Kipp at Slant, "but it’s all sunshine and laughter in comparison to the sequel. The thesis of this film is that the War on Terror is ultimately a self-destructive one for all concerned, from the bullying authority figures to the demoralized combat soldiers to the fractured family units."

"If ’28 Days Later’ was, in part, about the emergence of solidarity in the midst of crisis, ’28 Weeks Later’ is about the breakdown that occurs in what seems to be the aftermath," observes A.O. Scott at the New York Times. Scott Tobias at the Onion AV Club also salutes "the films’ pervasive message about the breakdown of order: Given so little response time, it’s remarkable just how quickly society can slide into chaos. Under Fresnadillo’s assured direction, 28 Weeks Later blurs the line between genre entertainment and a photojournalist’s shots of the next urban catastrophe."

Nathan Lee at the Village Voice puts it this way: "On the one hand, 28 Weeks Later is a fable of the reconstruction; it might have been called Nation-building of the Damned. On the other hand, so what?" Glenn Kenny at Premiere agrees that "the analogs to certain international quagmires don’t bog down the
brutal momentum and doom-laden logic of the storyline, and 28 Weeks
Later shows some serious stones in pretty much overturning the hopeful
ending of the first film."

Lisa Schwarzbaum at Entertainment Weekly likes the film, but is left with "the grim reality that a sequel, especially to a movie that once surprised, can never produce the same bite as the original. The genre twist is no longer so novel, the darkness of tone no longer so unnerving, the gaudy zombiedom no longer so tasty." Armond White at the New York Press, on the other hand, likes and resents "28 Weeks Later" while leaping on the opportunity to bash Danny Boyles original and then complain about the new aesthetic of modern action/horror films:

Above all, Fresnadillo aces what might be called the zombie movie aesthetic: his clear imagery is edited Tony Scott-fast, almost to the point of unintelligibility. Flashy shots, flickering lights, pandemonium rule. Incoherent action means it’s all just for shock. “Ah, man, this is FUBAR!” one G.I. cries when the new Rage Virus sends the military complex out of control. That’s the aesthetic: FUBAR.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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