After a satellite crashes in a small New Mexico town the government finds the inhabitants have all died of mysterious causes. Isolating the town, scientists race to discover what alien disease may have been brought to Earth by the satellite before it spreads, destroying mankind.
Arthur Hill (Stone), David Wayne (Dutton), James Olson (Hall), Kate Reid (Leavitt), Paula Kelly (Anson), George Mitchell (Jackson), Michael Crichton (Bearded Surgeon), Ramon Bieri (Manchek), Peter Hobbs (Sparks).
The Andromeda Strain, based on the Michael Crichton novel, is one of the more interesting and thought provoking sci-fi films to come out of the early 1970’s. Though the film is showing some serious age now, it was probably quite impressive when it first came out. The story is solid, moves along nicely, and is quite understated. Suspense is built fairly well though the brief attempts at horror feel somewhat contrived and awkward. At just over 2 hours long, the story gets a bit dull at times but remains consistent through the end.
Acting was decent but again, feels very dated at this point. There was a fair amount of overacting while at the same time a lack of emotion. Many of the supporting cast felt inexperienced and even uncomfortable at times.
Camera work, sets, and backgrounds are nothing like current films but surprisingly well done. Effects were mild but good. Dialogue was a bit weak at times but kept the story moving in the end. Sound and soundtrack are also showing age but are fairly well done.
Overall The Andromeda Strain is a solid sci-fi that serious genre fans won’t want to miss as it is nearly a cult classic. Readers of the book may not enjoy the film as much as others but will probably feel it is a decent adaptation.
Although younger viewers will likely find this one boring there isn’t much to limit audience age other than some dead bodies and dying lab animals.
The Andromeda Strain is no longer showing in any Littleton Colorado movie theatres.
Star rating: 3 out of 5
copyright ©2012 Dave Riedel
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