A film with three of my favourite actors in is a treat that I don’t think I’ve ever had before. However, it turned out not to be much of a treat. It was just OK, and I agree with the reviews that say that there’s not enough characterisation and that breadth has precedence over depth – which weakens this story.
I didn’t agree with the billings about the disquieting reality of the film. The only chill I got was from an air vent in the cinema, and the thought of how much control is exerted by authorities, making the crisis worse. I can see the rationale behind quarantine and isolation, but this soon leads to economic problems, and the lack of what creatures most need – connection.
I can believe that there would be looting – this is the nation that rioted over stocks of Cabbage Patch kids, so the final food and medicine is hardly a surprise.
The film feels like an authorised version where the officials are the good guys. It’s got some grey areas and tries to show a variety of issues (too many) but feels like the end of Source Code where the immorally resuscitated corpse gladly submits to serving America. (Knowing that story is written by an Englishman whose first film was a conspiracy story, I am now suspicious). This was another America speaks for the world movie, although it contains more than one European actor.
It reminded me of the last world war where peers as well as authorities imposed the desired behaviour on citizens, making them feel that they let down their nation by not conforming.
I dislike the idea that the outspoken blogger is the villain, when he could have been the saviour. There’s no government cover up or disturbing bio-warfare after all – the movie feels like it has been a wash your hands advert. The blogger’s critique is shown to finally be as dangerous and corrupt as anything he posts. But it is true that animals are sacrificed in the name of getting us a cure; and that the production of medicines and rare commodities became very lucrative during the times of disease and disaster. The public are controlled and what we know is controlled.
I am also suspicious of the medical world. I am sure that many in it are genuine in the quest to make people well and to help, but it crushes anything that challenges it with the support of the legal profession and the government.
Alterative therapies are gaining recognition but have to defer to conventional western medicine to avoid law suits and being closed down.
The film has characters based on the real life Centers for Disease, who collaborated with the film. Looking on CDC’s website, I’m appalled by the statement under Global Regional Centers for Disease Detection, end of para 1:
“Most importantly, none of these outbreaks became a health threat to the United States”
The CDC run round the world, intervening (or is that interfering) in other countries, imposing a beast practice (interesting typo, I left that in), and yet saying that their job is well done because no one at home got hurt – as if Americans are more valuable than Scots or Mexicans.
The CDC site feels very public relations – ‘we work for you 24/7’, ‘read our real life stories about why we do what we do….’ It’s all emotive, sensationalist, reading like a party political broadcast. It’s advertising.
Another disturbing quote is:
“The United States had a choice: gamble H1N1 would not kill in high numbers, or work as fast as possible to develop a vaccine and make it available to as many Americans as possible. In fact, there was no choice—the vaccine had to be made and distributed” (italics mine)
But what of the cynical view that vaccines make money?
My thoughts are – why is vaccine the only way to deal with illness? The film says that it is slow to make vaccines – it took 6 months to control the disease. Methodologically, growing a disease to play with it and see if you can work out how to reverse or nullify it seems a very limited and quite strange way to tackle a problem, yet it is the prevalent if not only method in science.
I am horrified that viruses are created by government paid scientists – how can that ever be justifiable?
Can’t diseases be more than just hygiene related problems – what about a deeper problem?
What would spiritual alternative healers make of this?
What of ancient and native medical wisdom?