Once you get past the cheap DV look (Soderbergh's too smart for it to not be 'intentional'), CONTAGION reveals itself as a horror movie less about death more about human industry. As one hedge fund manager tells Jude Law's evangelist: "We are interested in the opportunity here." In the midst of celebrity cameos, Cliff Martinez's groovy score and Soderbergh's clinical affectations, Matt Damon rises to the top.
The clinical and mundane realism of this hypothetically apocalyptic vision of a contagious virus without an antidote, plays on the mind well after viewing. The lack of spectacle is the film's inverted calling card, and it works to an extent. The A-list ensemble negates this slightly.
This was simple, clear and it scared the sh*t out of me. It is one of Soderbergh's best efforts. It doesn't get sucked in some strange advertising purposes and it doesn't allow for there to be any mass hysteria. It is just a wake-up call that reminds you not to forget to wash your hands before touching your face thousand of times everyday.
The Matt Damon storyline is the only part of the film with emotional attachment, respect for characterization, and care about humanity in an otherwise connect-the-dots, fear-baiting flick that feels soulless due to its lack of linger on any of its many plot points, of which, it refuses to dissect and approach it in an inventive, interesting or dimensional way. As mind numbing as the virus that it depicts.