Some movies inspire, some are inspired and the rest seem like its crew was short
on it. In the case of 28 Days, one feels that the scriptwriter desperately
needed some, while all along the director seems to have had too much (...too bad)
of it. Not a great equation by any means.
Coming after Girl, Interrupted, this movie stands utterly exposed in its
rather preposterous depiction of rehab centers, and the process of rehabilitation
itself. It's about as ridiculous as the idea of a man talking to animals (Dr.
Dolittle, Betty Thomas' earlier film), but not half as funny. Nor does it
have any drama/crisis central to it, apart from Sandra's addiction. Now, in all
these years of watching movies, what did we learn, if not the fact that things
almost always end well? The doubt conveyed by 'almost' is not to be considered
for a movie that screams out its 'feel-good' credentials. So, that doesn't leave
much to look forward to, does it?
The opening scenes, showing Gwen (Sandra Bullock) and Jasper (Dominic West) hobnobbing, make one want to grab a drink, immediately. But a sloshed Gwen disrupts her sister's wedding, crashes the marriage limo and lands herself a place in the rehab center. Enough to make one swap that Vodka for plain water!
Here on, the movie becomes as exciting as a hangover. An initially intransigent Gwen eventually eases into the process, even as we come across a host of characters that seem to be out of a comic book. The way the inmates are depicted is unintentionally amusing. And if it was intentional, then it can only be termed as shocking.
The performances are just as over-the-top, with the wonderful exception of Sandra Bullock. This isn't a charitable remark, by any means. Sandra appears unselfconscious, and her inherent edginess goes well with her character. Her pallid looks almost de-glamorize her. It can be construed as a part of an obvious attempt on the part of Thomas (the director) to get the 'look and feel' right. But one feels that she indulges a bit with the erratic camera angles and flash(es) from the past. The revelation of a troubled childhood isn't anything original.
At the end of it all, you are likely to come out bored and mildly irritated.