Contagion

August 25, 2016
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While working on The Informer! with Steven Soderbergh, screenwriter Scott Z. Burns was inspired by a scene with Matt Damon ranting about the germs Scott Bakula’s character left on a phone to explore the idea of a viral pandemic. From there, Contagion was born. Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we conclude our disease…

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Blindness

August 18, 2016
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When Fernando Meirelles showed his 2008 film Blindness to José Saramago, the author of the original book upon which it was based, Saramago loved it. Unfortunately for them, neither critics nor audiences connected with the allegorical film. It’s a tough watch with questionable character motivations and a fairly depressing world view. But some people still really…

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Children of Men

August 10, 2016
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It’s unfortunate that Alfonso Cuarón’s film Children of Men never found the audience it deserved, at least theatrically. Sure, it has been hailed as one of the best films of the year it was released, is often cited as one of the best science fiction films of the 21st century and was critically praised but for…

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Serenity

August 4, 2016
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Most people involved in making Joss Whedon’s 2005 film Serenity acknowledge that it was a near miracle that they got to make it. The TV show upon which it was based, “Firefly,” was canceled before its 14 episodes all aired and it seemed dead. Luckily, the rabid fanbase clamored loud enough and Universal saw that there…

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Outbreak

July 28, 2016
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After making Das Boot, Wolfgang Peterson came to Hollywood and began a new period in his life making big spectacle films, often action thrillers. Unfortunately, that meant when it came time to make his 1995 film Outbreak – stemmed from the world’s curiosity in the Ebola outbreak in Africa paired with the release of Richard Preston’s…

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The Crazies

July 21, 2016
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George A. Romero made The Crazies just a few years after making his breakout film Night of the Living Dead in ‘68, but with the popularity of Romero’s zombie film and the others in his ‘Dead’ trilogy still to be determined, he was still a struggling indie filmmaker. So it was with a very meager sum that…

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The Andromeda Strain

July 14, 2016
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Michael Crichton’s space disease thriller hit the public at the perfect time – when everyone was afraid of the astronauts accidentally bringing back space viruses upon returning to Earth. Crichton wrote the book in a very pseudo-scientific way that made it feel like more of a scientific documentation of a real happening, and it worked…

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The Omega Man

July 7, 2016
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Richard Matheson’s 1954 vampire horror novel “I Am Legend” helped influence the zombie genre (it was the inspiration for the ‘68 George Romero film “Night of the Living Dead”) and popularized the concept of a worldwide apocalypse due to disease. Yet for some reason, filmmakers haven’t been able to crack the story. It’s been made…

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Quarantine

March 28, 2014
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For many audience members, found footage films are just an opportunity to film a horror story on the cheap and don’t bring anything to the table. There are films, however, that work to use the filmmaking style to their advantage in exploring different ways to tell their stories. Sure, it’s a conceit, but if you…

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