Outbreak (1995) is an American action drama thriller film that was loosely based on Richard Preston‘s book The Hot Zone. Director Wolfgang Petersen (Troy (2004), Das Boot (1981), The NeverEnding Story (1984), Air Force One (1997)) did an excellent job executing this film that revolves around medical disasters. Outbreak was a fantastic film that gives viewers an insight of what may happen if an outbreak happens. I greatly enjoyed this movie because it focuses on a virus called Motaba (similar to Ebola) in Zaire and then in a town in the United States. The video shows us how government disease control centers USAMRIID and the CDC might react and how far they might go to control an outbreak.
U.S. Army General Donald McClintock (Donald Sutherland - The Italian Job (2003), MASH (1970), The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 (2014), The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)) and William Ford had to keep the virus a secret. William Ford (Morgan Freeman - The Shawshank Redemption (1994), Se7en (1995), Driving Miss Daisy (1989), Million Dollar Baby (2004)) and Donald destroyed the army camp that had infected soldiers. The virus that they are trying to get rid of is Motaba, which is a virus that causes a deadly fever. Motaba was discovered in 1967 in the African jungle. Colonel Sam Daniels (Dustin Hoffman - Kramer vs. Kramer (1979), Tootsie (1982), Rain Man (1988), The Graduate (1967)) is a USAMRIID virologist. Sam was sent to investigate a virus outbreak in Zaire in 1995 and shortly after returned to the United States and told General William Ford that they need to issue an alert. William ignored Daniels input and told him that a virus outbreak is unlikely to happen.
Betsy is an animal/monkey that hosts the virus and was smuggled into the United States. Jimbo Scott (Patrick Dempsey - Grey’s Anatomy (2005), Enchanted (2007), Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011), Made of Honor (2008)) is an employee at the Biotest animal holding facility. Jimbo made a deadly mistake when he decided to steal Betsy so that he can sell her on the black market and make a huge profit but he instead got infected on their way to sell Betsy. Jimbo still sold Betsy to a pet store owner who also got infected and soon after released Betsy/monkey into the woods.
Skip forward and everyone is looking for the host animal as the virus is spreading like the flu and the U.S. Army quarantines the town. Daniels disagrees with the military planning to bomb the city of Cedar Creek although the President of the United States approves of it. Daniel is frantically trying to find a cure, but Major General Donald McClintock has Daniel arrested so that he cannot find the cure. Will Daniel be able to save the town or will the city be bombed?
Overall the movie was very interesting as it deals with real life matters and things that could happen to anyone, regardless of where you live. After watching this movie, I recalled the Ebola virus and how scared everyone was, including me. Viruses are deadly in its own unique way and are something that the cleanest person cannot prevent because sometimes they are unknown and cannot be seen. The actors all did a fantastic job with their roles, and the acting was believable and outstanding. The special effects and makeup department did an excellent job. I gave this movie an eight because it was good, interesting, filled with action but lacked the features that will make someone want to see it again. Everyone should see this movie because it might make you more aware of your surroundings and help you if God forbid something like this should happen.
About Outbreak (1995)
Starring: Morgan Freeman, Donald Sutherland, Robert 'Bobby Z' Zajonc, Zakes Mokae, Billy Stevenson, Jack Rader, Johnny Kim, Dale Dye, Kevin Spacey, George Christy, Robert Alan Beuth, Peter Looney, J.T. Walsh, Patrick Dempsey, Maury Sterling, Brian Reddy, Michael Emanuel, Kellie Overbey, Benito Martinez, Joseph Latimore, Ina Romeo, Bruce Jarchow, Patricia Place, Conrad Bachmann, Ralph Miller, Julie Araskog, Gordon Michaels, Beau Lotterman, Dustin Hoffman, Rene Russo
Director: Wolfgang Petersen