The Andromeda Strain (1971)

1 11 2010

Okay, this might look a little boring but at least there is a hexagon on it, right?

by NiceDino

 

The Andromeda Strain” is a sf movie based on the 1969 novel by Michael Crichton. The film is about a deadly alien organism, who is brought to earth by an US exploration probe. The population of an entire town, where the probe lands, is wiped out immediately.

Only two people survive, an old man and a baby, and are being transported to a top-secret underground high-tech research facility called Wildfire. This is where most of the movie takes place, as a team of scientists try to find a cure for the deadly outer space organism.

Unlike many other sf-movies “The Andromeda Strain” is a much more serious take on the alien life form subject. The discovered life form is just a micro organism and therefore more like a disease than a horrible, murdering creature. There are no death-rays either.

People who are all about action should stay away from this movie since it is more like a thinkers movie. It is all about the scientific methods and processes to isolate and analyze the organism, to find out what makes it tick and, of course, how to stop it.

However this is still a science fiction movie and especially the disinfection and decontamination program, the team of scientists has to undergo to work in this facility, is both hilarious and fun to watch at the same time.

Although sometimes funny and somewhat naive by modern standards, the movie still manages to build up a fair amount of suspense, especially towards the end.

Furthermore the design of Wildfire is really cool and was imitated by many other sf-series and films, such as Star Trek for example. The different levels of the station are color-coded, which is very neat, and a good way to save money since they could use the same set over and over again. The only thing the had to do was to repaint it.

But not only western filmmakers were inspired by “The Andromeda Strain”. The 1995 television series “Neon Genesis Evangelion” also borrows from this movie. The computer error 601, which occurs several times throughout the series, also appears in “The Andromeda Strain” and is defined and displayed in exactly the same way: Buffer overflow / green letters on a black screen. Furthermore the layout of Central Dogma is a near carbon-copy of Wildfire and the thirteenth episode of the series features an angle which is a small crystalline life form – just like Andromeda – and also behaves very much like it.

Once again this a film with an entirely electronic score. Looks like I have a tendency towards those things. But nonetheless this is still very rare among mainstream Hollywood productions. Even though I stumble across them all the time.

Should you watch this movie? Well, of course this is up to you to decide. I would give it a thumbs up, due to the logic structure and the consistent plot. So go right ahead and give it a try.

 

Thanks for reading!

NiceDino ^^


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