Perhaps you want to fight viruses with viruses. Here are some recommendations for movies in which the disease is the star.
Contagion (2011) is Steven Soderbergh’s cautionary thriller, with Matt Damon, Laurence Fishburne, Kate Winslet, Marion Cotillard, Jennifer Ehle, Elliott Gould and others working together to fight a spreading pandemic. Call it Illness Eleven. (Netflix, Amazon, iTunes)
Pontypool (2008) is a very Canadian horror flick from Bruce McDonald, in which the virus might require everyone to learn French. Equal parts funny and disturbing, or amusant et inquiétant. (Amazon, iTunes)
12 Monkeys (1995), Terry Gilliam’s dark sci-fi thriller, features Bruce Willis as a man sent back in time to stop a virus before it spirals out of control. (Amazon, iTunes)
I Am Legend (2007) is one of several adaptations of Richard Matheson’s end-of-the-world novel (others are 1971’s Omega Man and 1964’s The Last Man on Earth) but worth watching for the blissful first half, in which Will Smith hunts deer and otherwise camps out in a depopulated New York City. It gets messy when the inevitable zombies show up, however. (Amazon, iTunes)
Shaun of the Dead (2004), because the end of the world doesn’t have to be gloomy. Simon Pegg and Nick Frost keep calm, carry on and battle zombies. (Netflix, Amazon, iTunes)
If you only know Siobhán McSweeney from her role as Sister Michael on the smash hit Derry Girls, you might think that her natural home is the cool, curmudgeonly demeanour of her most famous character.
In life, however, there’s nothing sardonic about her. There’s a fierce, dazzling charisma that makes her an almost athletic conversationalist, someone who can bounce from big issues to big laughs without missing a beat. Aside from being an accomplished actress, Siobhán is that rare thing that Ireland is so good at producing and yet bad at rewarding: a great talker. Continue reading →