3.5 / 5 Feb '11
Tagline: The picture runs 130 minutes!... The story covers 96 of the most critical hours in man's history!... The suspense will last through your lifetime!
Directed by: Robert Wise
Written by: Michael Crichton, Nelson Gidding
Actors include: Arthur Hill, David Wayne, James Olson
Length: 130 minutes
Conceptually this is very interesting, and the documentary style likely creeped out many. The plot is about an alien virus that is discovered near New Mexico. Then we are treated to what would happen in the next few days as they try to discover the virus and how to treat it, and learn of the disaster it could cause. It's visually very well made, everything is stark and put together, though some of the strange camera ideas and whatnot definitely scream of the times. I think what works so well as this feels like it could happen, they go about portraying the story in a very realistic way. Where it lacks is that it's just too darned long, I could do with an hour less and be far more satisfied. This is a slow moving film with purpose and I do recommend it to fans of vintage sci-fi, particularly to see how influential this must have been. I did feel a little disappointed but I certainly don't regret watching it.
Availability: On DVD