It’s that time of the year when your throat starts feeling a little sore, your nose is running like a Hawaiian waterfall and your forehead is hot enough to warm tortillas.
Like many around the nation and here in California, Patch goes Pop has come down with the dreaded winter cold. So far, it hasn’t graduated to the flu but as we all know, even colds are no fun.
So, what to do when you’re home lying on the couch, chugging cold medicine and going through tissues by the boxes? Turn to pop culture to make you feel a little better and get you through the day.
The ideal sick movie should of be something you’ve seen before so when you nod off into that cold medicine induced stupor, you don’t really miss much. It should also make you feel better, preferably by focusing on people who are even sicker than you.
With those criteria in mind, here are some movies to be sick by:
“The Andromeda Strain”
One of the best hard science fiction films ever made, it’s a nail-biter about a team of experts racing to discover the causes of a mysterious epidemic that has ravaged a small town. The early scenes of the movie where scientists in Hazmat suits wander through the town and discover people lying in the streets is haunting. In your fever haze you start rooting for these scientists in their high-tech lab to find a cure for that stubborn cold you’re fighting. Find the original 1971 thriller, not the boring TV remake. Bonus Pop Culture points: when you back to work and your colleagues ask what you had, tell them you had the Andromeda Strain.
This was one of several plague movies that came out in 1995, featuring an all-star cast that included Dustin Hoffman and Morgan Freeman. It’s about an airborne virus that finds its way to small American town and begins to spread. Not a great movie, but worth a viewing just for a scene where someone sneezes in a movie theater and the germs start spreading all slow-motion like through the theater. Will make you spend the rest of the movie trying to figure out how you got your cold virus.
“28 Days Later”
Another virus movie, but this time it causes havoc in England and it turns people into zombies. An excellent movie and one of the best of the new-wave zombie films out there. And again, will make you think, OK, I’m sick, but at least I’m not a zombie.
One of the early classics of the sci-fi genre. It’s 2274 and society has evolved into an idyllic state. One problem – when people turn 30, they are terminated. You’ll think, wow, and I thought my health plan was bad.
James Cameron’s underrated, sci-fi epic about deep sea discoverers who find something that, shall we say, is out-of-this-world. OK, this one is a bit of a cheat on this list because there’s no medical emergency or illness. However, it’s here because of one amazing scene where Ed Harris performs the mother of all CPR efforts to save the life of Mary Elizabeth Mastrantanio. If I’m lying on the couch coughing, sneezing and wheezing, I want Ed Harris pounding on my chest and saving me from my near-death state.
That’s the list. If you’re sick, take two of these and call me in the morning. I hope you feel better. And let me know if you have any other suggestions for movies to be sick by.
Patch Goes Pop can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org