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A movie directed by Steven Soderbergh

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Not life threatening

  • Sep 8, 2011


Directed by Steven Soderbergh


I’m not sure I can in good conscious recommend Contagion to anyone at all. It’s not that it’s a bad film; it’s just that seeing it has potentially damaging consequences on your psyche. About ten minutes into watching it, you might become hyper aware of your surroundings. Coughing noises will become amplified while your armrest might suddenly feel stickier than it did when you first sat down. In fact, by the time you’ve gotten home from seeing it - after touching door handles, staircase railings and, god forbid, other people - you may never want to leave the house again.


Directed by Steven Soderbergh, Contagion stars many an Oscar winner, from Matt Damon and Gwyneth Paltrow to Marion Cotillard and Kate Winslet. For all it’s familiarity though, it presents like a faceless production to demonstrate just how feasible this scenario really is. There is no real character development - there is no time for that - just different people reacting to a common foe. The enemy here is a new disease named MEV-1. It is considered novel because humanity has never seen it before and Soderbergh paints what he believes to be a very real picture of how the planet would handle something like this. As you can imagine, we don’t do very well.


Contagion is not as infectious as it could be. With so many plots in the air, some are almost forgotten and Soderbergh is none too subtle about how lackadaisical we all are with everything we touch. Still, with this much talent on screen and Soderbergh’s brilliant eye, Contagion remains a tense thriller with plenty of casualties and horrifying moments. Perhaps the most dire thing about it though is the hard reality that even in our darkest hour, humanity still exudes selfishness and greed, leaving every man to fend for himself. Sure, it’s a theory but it’s a plausible one and really just another argument to stay indoors. 

Thanks for reading.
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September 09, 2011
I almost had a panic attack reading the first paragraph! LOL I can imagine I would not want to see this one especially after you bringing the point up about humanity and selfishness and greed - I can see that vividly in my mind and that stuff works me up seeing it in a movie. Regardless of whether it's a theory or not doesn't matter to me, it still scares me in a bad way! LOL Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this one!
September 29, 2011
My pleasure ... this is definitely a movie that causes anxiety so if you're prone to it, stay away!
September 08, 2011
Heh. Love your review. I think I am catching a cold now (cough cough)
September 08, 2011
Don't come near me! :p  Oh, definitely no suckling pig for you when in HK, LOL!
September 29, 2011
Every time someone coughed in the theatre, I wanted to leave.
More Contagion reviews
review by . September 12, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Soderberg's Film About Viral Infection and The World's Reaction (Cough, Cough)
Steven Soderberg is one director who has a colorful and somewhat impressive resume; his best works include “Solaris”, “Ocean’s Eleven”, “Erin Brokovich”, and “Traffic” so I guess it would be easy to expect much from him. Soderbergh’s “Contagion” is a movie that can easily be ruined by expectations from its viewer. I tend to see a director as someone who is only as good as his last work, so I went to see it with an open mind. …
review by . February 23, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
*** out of ****    Steven Soderbergh's "Contagion" feels like a documentary film shot through the lenses of a gloriously high-quality film camera. Perhaps this is because in a sense, it kind of is. The film is about a deadly epidemic/pandemic - unidentified and initially untreatable - that starts to spread across the globe; from Hong Kong to Atlanta. The basic plot concerns a number of different people ranging from scientists to a blogger; all of whom react in significantly different …
review by . September 10, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Star Rating:         In an age when medical thrillers are more about action sequences and gory makeup effects (Doomsday, the Resident Evil films), along comes Steven Soderbergh’s Contagion, a cold, methodical, observant social commentary. It takes us through the stages of a worldwide viral epidemic with eerily convincing logic, and with disturbing emotional detachment. It’s not about the art of storytelling so much as the craft of depicting a medical emergency …
review by . September 09, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Contagion is a Chilling and Gripping Thriller
A couple of years ago, news and health agencies the world over were concerned about a possible pandemic stemming from bird flu and swine flu. Thankfully like SARS a few years earlier, the outbreaks were rather small thanks to a wealth of precautionary information and measures. In the new film “Contagion” director Steven Soderbergh paints a frighteningly realistic look at a worldwide pandemic that spread without warning, and its devastating aftermath. When businesswoman Beth Emhoff …
review by . September 08, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
'Contagion' 'Two Jews On Film' Are Immune To Soderbergh's Pandemic Thriller (Video)
By Joan Alperin Schwartz      An international traveler reaches into the snack bowl at an airport bar before passing her credit card to a waiter. A business meeting begins with a round of handshakes. A man coughs on a crowded bus.      One contact. One instant. And a lethal virus is transmitted.      Great premise. Great beginning. but unfortunately, that's not enough to make a great film.      'Contagion' …
Quick Tip by . January 03, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
Major yawn. The only reason I don't add more minuses is the acting was solid despite the general weakness of the story. This was too much an "inside" movie to be anything close to a thriller and the conspiracy storylines were too weak to rescue it as a conspiracy type movie.
Quick Tip by . September 08, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Big cast, big story, big fear, lots of talk but little action. Despite being a big fan of Matt Damon, this is one movie where I don't think he excels in. In fact, you won't even notice he's there. Waste of talent, I feel. No punch. Not surprises. Nothing new here!
About the reviewer
Joseph Belanger ()
Ranked #8
Hello Lunchers. I am a thirty-something guy making his way in Toronto. I am a banker by day and a film critic the rest of the time. Sensitive, sharp and sarcastic are just a few words that start with … more
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About this movie



Director: Steven Soderbergh
Genre: Action, Drama, Thriller
Release Date: 9 September 2011 (USA)
Screen Writer: Scott Z. Burns
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