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The Andromeda Strain

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Michael Crichton’s space disease thriller hit the public at the perfect time – when everyone was afraid of the astronauts accidentally bringing back space viruses upon returning to Earth. Crichton wrote the book in a very pseudo-scientific way that made it feel like more of a scientific documentation of a real happening, and it worked gangbusters for his readers. When Robert Wise decided to adapt it, he opted to treat it the same and make it feel like a documentary. For some, it works better than for others. 

Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we continue our disease series with Wise’s 1971 thriller The Andromeda Strain.

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"It should’ve been left up to the scientists! It’s a colossal mistake! Tell the President I said so!"

Michael Crichton’s space disease thriller hit the public at the perfect time – when everyone was afraid of the astronauts accidentally bringing back space viruses upon returning to Earth. Crichton wrote the book in a very pseudo-scientific way that made it feel like more of a scientific documentation of a real happening, and it worked gangbusters for his readers. When Robert Wise decided to adapt it, he opted to treat it the same and make it feel like a documentary. For some, it works better than for others. 

Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we continue our disease series with Wise’s 1971 thriller The Andromeda Strain. We discuss Crichton, Wise and the adaptation by Nelson Gidding, looking at what works and what doesn’t for us. We chat about the non-stars Wise cast in the film, talking about each of their careers then wondering why their careers weren’t as strong as Gregory Peck’s. We look at the production design and the special effects, enjoying everything they brought to the table, even if they weren’t used to their full potentials or, in many cases, often overused. And we chat about the non-score score by Gil Mellé, sharing opposing views as to what a score like this brings to the table to a film like this. 

It’s an interesting film that is burdened by Wise’s penchant for including too much of the processes these scientists have to go through, but still one worth talking about. Check the movie out then tune in!

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