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28 Days

MPAA Rating:


Run Time:



Sandra Bullock

Dominic West


(pictures (c)2000 Columbia Pictures, Inc.)

Still shot from the movie: 28 Days.

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Reviewed by

Overall B
Run Time102

Making the Grades

Gwen (Sandra Bullock) can't say no to a drink, and her boyfriend Jasper (Dominic West) is usually guzzling gratuitously with her. Obvious to everyone except themselves, both are alcoholics. But Gwen's life hits reality after she destroys her sister's wedding by driving the bridal limousine into a house. The incident lands her in a rehab center where she is ordered to take a 28-day detox program in lieu of imprisonment.

28 Days - Official Site Far from impressed with her new surroundings, Gwen cynically views the helpful mottoes hanging on the walls, and barely tolerates compulsory group therapy sessions that often end with motivational songs and chants. Yet with the strong divergent personalities and counselors in Gwen's group forcing her to face her problems and listen to theirs, she and we are subtly reminded that addictions prey on rich and poor, famous and unknown, heterosexual and homosexual, old and young.

28 Days - Official Site As time passes, Gwen does more than just trade her old addictions for less harmful ones, like cigarettes and candy. She also begins to develop empathy toward other clients of the center, who are struggling with everything from drug dependencies to sexual obsessions. The friendship formed with her teenage roommate Andrea (Azura Skye), allows Gwen to reach outside of her own problems and realize the potential she has buried in booze. But the increasing distance she experiences during Jasper's occasional visits, provide the greatest indication of how far Gwen has moved from her old lifestyle.

28 Days - Official Site The previews of this movie may leave you expecting a comedy. While Gwen and Jasper's opening drunken romps may appear somewhat humorous, once her life hits bottom the tone of the movie changes and any humor comes from Gwen's emotional need to cope. Parents should be aware the serious themes in this film involve strong language, sexual overtones, self-mutilation, and brief nudity.

However, with the never ending flood of movies that glamorize alcohol and drug use, even with teens, I have to applaud 28 Days' effort to look at the consequences of substance abuse. I only wonder if Gwen's transformation is really possible in just 28 days.

Discussion Ideas After The Movie

Teaching ideas and topics to discuss about 28 Days.

While countless movies and television programs portray the use of alcohol (and even illegal drugs), how often do you see the consequences of using these substances included in the scripts?

Canadian Movie Ratings

Not Rated
AB Not Rated
MB Not Rated -----
ON Not Rated
QC Not Rated
Not Rated

Canadian Home Video Rating: 14A

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