Director Steven Soderbergh (Traffic, Haywire) has once again given viewers another instant classic to enjoy with the epidemic-disaster film Contagion, now available to infect your home library on Blu-ray. While it might not be as action-packed or fast-paced as 1995’s Outbreak film, it’s still a compelling thriller that’s guanateed to shake people to their very core with the panic and fear that comes with knowing what might happen if a killer virus was set loose worldwide.
Fellow reviewer Chris Pandolfi enjoyed the film when he reviewed the theatrical version last September, which you can read a snippet of below or in its entirety right HERE:
“And what of the vaccine? When a discovery is made, an entirely new host of medical protocols slow its availability to the public – animal trials, human trials, and getting it approved would all take months. Even after it becomes available, it becomes a question of who will have access to it first, and of that, I will say no more. Like all other aspects of the film, Soderbergh and screenwriter Scott Z. Burns intelligently scrutinize the situation. What they shy away from is an emotional center for the audience to identify with. The characters are observed with almost scientific precision, and yet there’s no real sense of how they feel. I’m not really being critical, although it certainly would have been a welcome addition. As visceral and disconcerting as Contagion is, it’s not a narrative film so much as a study in technique, and as such, it succeeds in tremendous fashion.”
As with most of their Blu-ray releases, Warner Bros. has done a great job with this title. The film transfer looks amazing, as every color and detail shows up like it should. The added detail definitely serves to make the deathly ill looking virus victims even more terrifying as they suffer. The 5.1 DTS-HD audio makes sure they every piece of crucial dialogue is heard, while the sound effects and score come in nice and clear.
There’s not a lot of special features on this disc, but the ones here are just as informative and scary as the film itself. “The Reality of Contagion” gives us an eleven minute look at the inevitability of such a virulent outbreak, while also showing off the logistics of trying to immunize entire cities and countries. After seeing this, I didn’t know if this or the movie was more scary. “The Contagion Detectives” has the cast talking about meeting the real life scientists and medical detectives that handle cases and fight each day to prevent such a catastrophe such as the one in the film. Lastly there’s “Contagion: How a Virus Changes the World”, which shows viewers a quippy little PSA that explains how a pandemic is spread and things each of us can do to help prevent one from happening.
While it may not be as fast-paced as the advertising would have you believe, Steven Soderbergh’s star-packed Contagion is still a terrifying study in the real possibly of a deadly infection epidemic that will stay with you long after the credits have rolled by. While not as feature-packed as some might have liked, there’s still plenty of informative special features on this Blu-ray package that are just as – if not more – frightening than the film itself. Soderbergh fans are sure to like this one, as he covers a pandemic as only he can. Give this one a chance to infect your Blu-ray collection, you’ll be glad you did.
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Warner Home Video