“The End of the World as We Know It”

Anne Billson writes about disaster movies for Perspective. “You can’t say we weren’t warned. Our elected representatives might have been more aware of the speed at which a deadly virus can spread around the world if only they had paid more attention to films like Contagion, in which Gwyneth Paltrow shakes hands with a chef in Macau who has been cooking a pig infected by a bat disturbed by rainforest clearance. As I write this, the people of Texas are struggling in freezing temperatures for which their science-denying governors have dismally failed to prepare; perhaps they would have taken climate change more seriously if they’d seen The Day After Tomorrow, in which the northern hemisphere is gripped by a new Ice Age, forcing Americans to migrate south across the Rio Grande towards more clement weather..”

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