Director Steven Soderbergh has got a new film out this week - a 'real life' thriller about a pandemic that sweeps through the population and the resulting panic. But this film and others like it owe a big debt to the horror genre and such gems as George Romero's The Crazies.

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  • Comment number 25. Posted by Rourkesdrifter

    on 23 Oct 2011 10:19

    Well saw Contagion last night and I have to say pardon the pun but it left me rather cold. I felt no connection to the characters mainly through lack of any real development. It made me realise how clever Danny Boyle was with 28 Days Later, that one scene where Cillian Murphy recalls the family moments in the kitchen when he returns to his home is priceless, and I immediately felt a connection, it's a stand out film for me in so many ways, and watching Contagion last only highlighted that fact.

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  • Comment number 24. Posted by Brian - New Forest

    on 21 Oct 2011 23:21

    I'm not sure "thriller" is the right classification for Contagion. I'd class it more as a speculative docudrama. We are kept at a cool remove from the ensemble of characters, which rarely given much depth beyond the high profile casting choices.

    I found it fascinating and interesting throughout, but it steadfastly avoided the dramatic. If were watching a horror or sci fi with lab techs in tunnel hazmat suits, at some point some unlucky geek will have an unfortunate scalpel related breach to their sterile containment, that doesn't happen here. There are hints of a break down to law and order, as we'd see in any zombie or similar apocalypse, but that strangely goes nowhere and is swept under the carpet in completely unspecified ways by the end. It's worthy attention to detail keeps it from leaving the ground, Andromeda Strain, but all strain without the Andromeda. So apart from reinforcing whatever OCD or hypochondraic tendencies you may have, it's forgettable. Still, you could catch it if it's, say, an in flight movie, although, probably the worst place to see it.

    It is nice that Soderbergh chose to be interviewed by phone on 5 Live, he's conscientious about not becoming the next vector. Let's not forget that in Carpenter's The Thing, one of the scientists estimates the time for the Thing to take over the world, should it escape Antarctica, by using a mathematical model for infection.

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  • Comment number 23. Posted by DJM

    on 21 Oct 2011 19:57

    Contagion is a good film, not a great one, certainly not a gripping or distressing one, but simply a good film. It is well acting by its ensemble cast and has a good sense of realism, but I felt emotionally detached from the under-developed characters and it is probably a little too slow-paced and subtle for its own good. All in all though it is still worth seeing if you like this genre of film.

    On the topic of The Crazies, I liked the remake much more than the original.

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  • Comment number 22. Posted by Ian Schultz

    on 21 Oct 2011 13:41

    A audio of you calling a Michael Bay film "great" has surfaced http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UV4ur2UdnPA

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  • Comment number 21. Posted by Truchsess

    on 21 Oct 2011 10:57

    I can't agree with the doctors oppinion about this movie. He says it's gripping and interessting... I actually found it extremly boring and in some scenes also a little bit silly.

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  • Comment number 20. Posted by Crash Landen

    on 20 Oct 2011 23:27

    Red State was also terrible, Mark. Decidedly left wing, confused, meandering, poorly written, directed, shot and acted. Smith seems to further regress with each new film. It's what I expected, though.

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  • Comment number 19. Posted by Carole Crawford

    on 20 Oct 2011 21:15

    I love "And The Band Played On". A factually based movie about what was HIV and where it first was diagnosed and how it came to be spread. It was scientific and humanistic, rather than sensationalising the disease.

    However, Contagion does look to be interesting. With such a stellar cast, I'll certainly give it a go.

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  • Comment number 18. Posted by Rourkesdrifter

    on 20 Oct 2011 19:35

    Dr K,
    You must have been reading my mind..:-) when I first saw the trailer for Contagion,I immediately thought of Romero's The Crazies. Post Apocalyptic films like 28 Days Later and The Road for instance have always held a huge fascination for me and for thousands of others I'm sure. I genuinely believe as humans we are so fearful of it actually happening, in a bizzare way we want to see more of it. I Remember watching Children of Men for the first time at the cinema and it blew me away, it lingered in my memory for days.Thought provoking and disturbing pieces never fail to make their mark...Why? Because we enjoy confronting our fears.

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  • Comment number 17. Posted by 6oclockman

    on 20 Oct 2011 18:22

    OUTBREAK is a much better film than CONTAGION,
    because of course in Outbreak, Patrick Dempsey's organs get eaten from the inside out until they're nothing but a festering mephitic soup. Worth the price of admission in my book.

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  • Comment number 16. Posted by Jackovasaurus

    on 20 Oct 2011 15:19

    There’s no originality in ‘End of the World’ type mediums now.
    They all carry over the same sort of notion that it invariably becomes an unfortunate bore.
    ‘oh look zombies’ zzzzzzzzzz, ‘oh look a disease’ zzzzzzzzzz ‘oh look alien plants’ wtf? Oh I mean zzzzzzz.

    I wouldn’t mind watching or reading something where the future is happy and alive and possibly more positive,but that sounds daft.O bugger it!, where’s my sledge hammer.

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