Steven Soderberg’s 2011 thriller Contagion has resurfaced in the zeitgeist as a result of the recent coronavirus outbreak in China. The film, which parallels recent headlines, recently popped up on iTunes’s Top Movie List on the app and on the main movie site. The title appears alongside recent first-run titles and Oscar nominees including Joker, Ford v. Ferrari, Parasite, Once Upon a Time…In Hollywood and Hustlers.
Written by Scott Z. Burns, Contagion features an all-star ensemble that includes Marion Cotillard, Bryan Cranston, Matt Damon, Laurence Fishburne, Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Winslet and Jennifer Ehle. The story starts with a woman (Paltrow) on a Hong Kong business trip who has a layover in Chicago before returning home to Minneapolis. She appears to catch a cold during her trip, but when she gets home, her son gets sick. Her symptoms begin to get worse and she ends up dead. As the story unfolds,, medical researchers and public health officials try to identify and contain the disease and social order begins to go on a downward spiral during the pandemic. Luckily, a vaccine is found to save the day.
Last week, China has tried to contain the coronavirus epidemic, which has claimed at least 25 lives and infected more than 800 people. It has forced thousands of the country’s cinemas to close their doors. All local film releases scheduled for the highly lucrative Chinese New Year holiday were pulled by distributors. In response, widespread cinema closures were reported.
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