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Contagion - quick review

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Patrick Sun, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    I wanted to like "Contagion" more, as it features Steven Soderbergh at the directorial helm, and an Oscar-studded cast of winners and nominees. Overall, I think the script was too briskly paced, without as much background details to ground the story of a viral outbreak that threatens to reach pandemic levels. There are many players in the story, and the film just bounces from subplot to subplot (or character groupings) until it finally concludes. I didn't like the musical score, it tended to make the film feel too euro-pop-ish, public access station-ish at times, which didn't help things. If you're a germophobe, this film won't help you with that condition. It'll make you think twice about touching any object out in contact with the general public. I give it 2.75 stars, or a grade of B-.
     
  2. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    You're much kinder then I'd be. It's a film that could be surmised as a new-Outer Limits episode or the "results" section of "The Stand" or a different take on the Andromeda Strain.. I don't know, by the time we were about 1/2 way into it, I realized the characters were not very compelling and the story kept bouncing around making me care about them less.

    There isn't a very cohesive narrative that grabs you and the drama falls flat.


    On your scale, I'd say a C. Maybe a rental.
     
  3. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    I probably was kinder than usual (I almost gave it a C+). One more thing that bugged me about the movie, it's not shot on film, so to my eye, the production values looked much cheaper in terms of the look of the movie, it had that Movie-of-the-week video look to it in many scenes.
     
  4. Greg Kettell

    Greg Kettell Screenwriter

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    I liked it overall (and I liked the score, too). They were going for realism, which is actually somewhat refreshing for a Hollywood movie. The cast did a great job. The myriad story arcs did serve to limit the drama, though. I think it would have worked much better as a TV miniseries than as a feature film.
     
  5. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Producer

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    It's "Traffic" with germs. Enjoyable movie but not as good as it could/should have been. Agree that it would've worked better in a longer format - it just crams in too many characters/situations for many of them to work. The one with Marion Cotillard felt especially weak...
     
  6. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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    Excellent movie. I loved it. It deliberately lacks oversized characters or big major events. It simply takes a scenario -- what if an epidemic on par with the 1918 flu pandemic happened today? -- and plays it out as realistically as possible given the constraints of the movie format. It's chilling because it starts like the sort of virus we've seen with SARS and the swine flu, and then escalates so much further. The movie maintains its deliberate pacing even as events start to go terribly out of hand. Unlike most horror movies, the boogey man here is very real, and it's probably only a matter of time.
     
  7. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    It's a race against time. The next pandemic vs. scientist's efforts to create a universal flu vaccine. I for one am interested in seeing this movie. I know (and like) Soderbergh's style, so I may be kinder than most towards this film. This is a nice reminder for me to schedule my flu shot though...
     

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