This has been trending heavily at the top of Netflix’s most watched listings – and it’s fairly obvious as to why.

Hence why this film, made by Oscar-winning Traffic filmmaker Steven Soderbergh nine years ago, deserves a mention due to its ‘alleged’ similarities to the start of the current Coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan, China.

The disease used in this drama has a far larger thirty per cent mortality rate – and causes more social unrest and crime waves we fortunately haven’t experienced on this scale – but before Covid-19 it uses the H1N1 influenza and SARS viruses as an influence, so there’s definitely an extra layer of intrigue added into this star-studded film.

Which basically starts when Gwyneth Paltrow’s Beth Emhoff returns home to suburban Minneapolis sick from a business trip in Asia, then within two days she dies in her husband Mitch’s (Matt Damon) arms with this mystery illness – and it spirals out of control from there.

Throw in a plethora of Oscar-winners and nominees in the form of Marion Cotillard, Kate Winslet, Jude Law and Laurence Fishburne – with their characters having various links to the medical profession – then you have a story that is topically tense with the usual production values that come with a Soderbergh movie.

The last half hour peters off a tad – but Contagion for the most part is fascinatingly infectious.

Rating: 4/5

Gavin Miller

Cast: Matt Damon, Marion Cotillard, Laurence Fishburne, Jennifer Ehle, Kate Winslet, Bryan Cranston, Elliott Gould, Sanaa Lathan, John Hawkes & Gwyneth Paltrow

Running Time: 1 Hr 46 Mins

Director: Steven Soderbergh

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