Contagion

“The government rushed the trials. The lawyers indemnified the drug companies. Maybe it causes autism or narcolepsy or cancer 10 years from now. Who know?
The swine flu vaccine killed people back in 1976. Nerve disease. So we’re all guinea pigs, starting from today. Just wait, they’ll start listing side effects like the credits at the end of a movie. “

Even though Alan Krumwiede lies about being infected and wrongfully supports forsythia I think he makes some valid points. We have generally witnessed medicine be pulled from the market because it has caused health problems. Some drugs have positive effects and save lives. Other times the side effects out weigh the positives and cause more damage. Recently my fathers diabetes medicine Avandia was discontinued. The FDA issued warnings because it increased the chances of heart attacks and strokes. This becomes an ethical question; do we save lives now and deal with side effects a little later in the years? In Contagion the virus has killed 26 million people in more or less 100 days. Between the 18th and 26th day Hextall sees that the virus has mutated and the R-noughts has changed. She says, “1 in 12 people on the planet will contract the disease”. If the MEV-1 vaccine was not hurried and distributed more people would become sick and more than 26 million people would have died.

Also the scene in which Dr.Cheever speaks to Aubrey he says “In 1918 1 percent of the population died from Spanish flu. It was novel, like this, no one had even seen it before.” Steven Soderbergh is able to relate this film to our reality through history. By mentioning the Spanish flu and the effects of the swine flue vaccine he highlights how realistic a situation like this could become because we have experienced major deaths in the past.



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