Horror movies are the perfect place to explore our fears in the safety of our own homes. So it stands to reason that since we’re all stuck self-isolating in our own homes we should want to explore our abject terror of the COVID-19 virus driving ordinarily sane people to stockpile booze and toilet paper outside.
Perhaps it’s a fascination with the movies that predicted how a pandemic would play out that. Maybe it’s watching characters you can relate to dealing with a brand new disease in a story that’s ultimately fiction makes you feel better.
It’s not surprising we suddenly seem to have an appetite for infection and quarantine movies, so here are seven of the best ones and where you can stream them from home.
A classic infection blockbuster from Wolfgang Peterson where we see medics battling with a virus brought to a Californian town by an African monkey. Outbreak is glossy and thrilling and much more self-contained than something like Contagion – making it less a pandemic movie but a race to contain the virus mixed with some high octane conspiracy theory business.
Steven Soderbergh’s realistic depiction of what might happen in the wake of a pandemic sees doctors struggling to identify the cause of a deadly virus and attempt to develop a vaccine while cities are under quarantine, false reports are causing panic buying, and supplies of the inoculation aren’t sufficient to treat everyone at risk. Featuring an all-star cast including Kate Winslet, Matt Damon, Laurence Fishburne, Jude Law, and Gwyneth Paltrow it’s a classy and slightly terrifying look outside our own window.
3. 92 Days
93 Days is a historic gripping documentation of the deadly disease starting from the day the Ebola virus came into Nigeria to the day the country was declared Ebola-free.
Directed by Steve Gukas, the movie stars actors like Bimbo Akintola, Keppy Ekpeyong Bassey, Gideon Okeke, Somkhele Idhalama, Bimbo Manuel, Danny Glover, and Tim Reid.
The acclaimed Malayalam movie is about the spread of the Nipah virus that happened in Kerala a couple of years ago and the brilliant medical team that helped contain it. With a taut, no-nonsense script, the film takes a very realistic approach to the disease, while smartly including the elements of a thriller.
2013 South Korean film written and directed by Kim Sung-su, about an outbreak of a deadly strain of H5N1 that kills its victims within 36 hours, throwing the district of Bundang in Seongnam, which has a population of nearly half a million people, into chaos. It stars Jang Hyuk and Soo Ae.
Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo star in this movie, in which the world has been upended by an epidemic that causes blindness. A woman who is secretly immune to the disease follows her affected husband, a doctor, to quarantine…which is located in an abandoned mental institution.
7. Children of Men
A mysterious illness prompted every woman in the world to miscarry in the early 2000s, and for nearly 20 years since that event — which happened around the same time as a highly deadly flu pandemic, no new children have been born. The world has descended into chaos, but if there’s hope for humanity, it might come in the form of a depressed Clive Owen, his activist ex-wife, Julianne Moore, and a young refugee woman.
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