A Conversation about Contagion

Brief Synopsis: Contagion features a super contagious airborne virus that kills within a few days. The movie follows the experiences of the Emhoff family and WHO/CDC staff members as they try to combat the spread of the disease.

Maria: I really loved that this movie had no romantic sub-plot. While Beth Emhoff, a cheating wife/business executive, contaminates both her family and the larger American nation-state, none of the other female characters are condemned for being strong, single female characters or are forced into plot-driven romantic entanglements. I also really dug that Laurence Fishborne’s character is surprisingly sympathetic and gracious — it’s not often that brainy bureaucrats are treated sympathetically, particularly when they’re of color.

Now, Gena, you were saying that something you didn’t love was the portrayal of China and women’s bodies as the ultimate barometer of national health. Can you say a little more about that?

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