London Undead: Screening/Branding the Empty City

Christoph Lindner in Branding Cities: Cosmopolitanism, Parochialism, and Social Change. ed S. Donald et al (Routledge 2009), 91-104

28 Days Later (2003) Directed by Danny Boyle Shown: Cillian Murphy

This chapter considers the representation of empty urban space in contemporary British cinema. Focusing on London, I am interested in the way Danny Boyle’s zombie-horror film, 28 Days Later (2002), employs post-apocalyptic panoramas of deserted cityscapes that reinforce an iconic image of the city. My argument is that, despite its deeply uncanny properties, the film’s vision of an undead metropolis nonetheless plays to the aesthetic and commercial needs of the tourist and city-branding industries.

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