Directed by: Steven Soderberg
Written by: Scott Burns
The progress of a deadly virus that wreaks worldwide havoc is followed through the interlocking stories of a father (Matt Damon) trying to protect his daughter, an irresponsible blogger (Jude Law) with an agenda, and four doctors (Laurence Fishburne, Kate Winslet, Jennifer Ehle, and Marion Cotillard) working with the CDC, who are trying to isolate and cure the disease before it wipes out a hefty chunk of the population.
I am officially afraid to touch anybody or anything. In Steven Soderberg’s best film since Traffic, this thriller really hits the point that if you don’t wash your hands you will DIE! In all seriousness though as soon as I got out of this film I washed my hands. It is a story that is riveting and keeps you on the edge of your seat, at least for the first half of the film.
The film starts off with the film establishing that this disease is starting to be spread all around the world, while introducing all of the main players in the film. This sequence was done in very fast and compelling pace. Cliff Martinez’s score made it feel like it was an even worse situation. Not that the threat of millions upon millions of people dying is already a worse situation. This was one of the best first hours of any movie, which sent chills up my spine when I learned new information about the disease.
Matt Damon has proven again why he is one of the best A-list actors around. He plays a grieving father who is trying to keep his only daughter safe. He brings so much emotion to the screen time and time again. Morpheus, I mean Laurence Fishburne, was fantastic. He played the head of the CDC, trying to help find a cure while trying to keep his family safe. His compassion and gentle heart get him into trouble while his government co-worker (Bryan Cranston, BREAKING BAD!!!) using him as a scapegoat.
Matt Damon and Laurence Fishburne might have been the best but we can’t forget about Jude Law, Marion Cotillard, Kate Winslet, and Gwyneth Paltrow. Jude Law had the biggest role out of this group. He was a blogger that is sure the CDC is hiding a cure to make money. Marion Cotillard’s role felt cut off. Her storyline was extremely interesting but the direction not dive deep enough into her life and her ending was left unclear. None the less, would have loved more Marion. Kate Winslet and Gwyneth Paltrow played their respective roles well but were nothing special. Winslet playing a field officer for the CDC and Paltrow playing Matt Damon’s wife.
The only issue I had with the film were the fact that after the very exciting first hour it really slowed down. The chills went away and I sat int he back of my seat. It wasn’t that the rest of the film was boring but the energy of the film could not keep up. Contagion was a very entertaining thriller that will make you think twice before you decide not to wash your hands.