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Classics and discoveries from around the world, thematically programmed with special features, on a streaming service brought to you by the Criterion Collection.
The Andromeda Strain
Directed by Robert Wise • 1971 • United States
Starring Arthur Hill, David Wayne, James Olson
One of the great paranoia thrillers of the 1970s, Robert Wise’s adaptation of the novel by Michael Crichton is a chillingly plausible vision of mass contagion and the scientific quest to stop a plague. When nearly all the residents of a small New Mexico town die following the introduction of an extraterrestrial bacteria into their community, a team of scientists—holed up in an isolated bunker with a self-destruct doomsday button—must race against time to stop the alien life form from infecting the rest of humanity. This gripping science-fiction classic stands out for its tone of matter-of-fact realism that makes the story all the more frightening. The sets, at the time some of the most elaborate ever built, still inspire awe today.