Entertainment: Movies to watch for your apocalyptic quarantine

by Charles Gerian

With the Coronavirus spread across the world, laying siege to businesses, sports, the entertainment industry and more, let's take our mind off this ghastly, world-ending pandemic...

...and talk about the best pandemic movies to watch, or games to play, while you're waiting on the end of the world.

First up is the 2007 masterpiece I AM LEGEND, based on the Richard Mattheson novel of the same name. This film starred Will Smith as Dr. Robert Neville, the last man on Earth, patrolling New York City by day and, at night, hunkering down as the vampiric undead hunt him.

I AM LEGEND is a chilling movie, because the collapse of the world is shown so well through not only flashback scenes but from the remnants of what Neville travels through. Times Square is an overgrown jungle with billboards to movies that will never see the light of day. Posters and warnings cover walls and doors, advising against close contact, getting near stray and ravenous animals, and practicing hygiene. It was terrifying in 2007, and it's even more scary now.

Next is the gripping, heart-stopping, 28 DAYS LATER and 28 WEEKS LATER duology. 28 DAYS LATER sees a man waking up from a coma to see that his native London is seemingly deserted...torn apart by mass confusion, terror, and violence thanks to the outbreak of what is christened The Rage Virus, which turns the living things it comes into contact with into cannibalistic, snarling, alpha predators. Basically, really really fast zombies. 28 WEEKS, the anxiety-inducing sequel, amps up the horror and the thrills. While you don't get to see much of “before” the virus, it tells a lot of stories within the film itself. You get to see how people fell, made due, survived, and eventually built themselves back up.

CONTAGION, a WB film from 2011, has recently seen renewed popularity as the film deals with a widespread viral outbreak originating from China. The film shows, in bleak detail, the societal collapse of America as this virus sweeps the nation. Starring Matt Damon, Gwenyth Paltrow, Marion Cotillard, Jude Law, and Lawrence Fishburne.

HBO's gripping drama series CHERNOBYL is also relevant at this time, dealing with the meltdown, coverup, and radiation infection of everyone in and around Chernobyl.

On the opposite end of the apocalyptic spectrum, we got the RESIDENT EVIL franchise, six artistic action movies about a viral outbreak.

Games include THE LAST OF US, Resident Evil of course, and more.

I think we'll all find something to busy ourselves with.