Viral Load: There’s a Surplus of ‘Virus Movies’ to Stream on Amazon Prime During Quarantine
By Kiko Martinez
If the only “virus movies” you’ve watched so far while in quarantine are Outbreak and Contagion and you’re looking to keep your blood pressure elevated during the real-world pandemic, you’re in luck.
A quick journey into the untapped fringes of Amazon Prime will reveal a wealth of independent virus-themed films you’ve probably missed.
“I think watching movies about viruses during a pandemic is very similar to watching scary movies in October or Christmas movies in December,” said San Antonio filmmaker Buddy Calvo, whose last film, 2018’s Stage V, followed a group of kids fending for themselves after a deadly virus spreads worldwide. “It’s just a theme for the state of mind we are currently in.”
Once the COVID-19 pandemic is behind us — whenever that will be — Calvo thinks screenwriters and directors are going to gravitate to more virus-themed projects.
“Filmmakers will never stop making end-of-the-world movies because audiences will never stop watching,” he said. “After all of this is said and done, I think there’ll be an uptick in this genre. We want to know or fantasize about how this will all end, and we’ll always line up to see the next film that gives us a preview of our own destruction.”
Since there’s no way we’d be able to list the scores of virus movies currently streaming on Prime, we selected a few that stand out. We’re not including any zombie narratives and only picked movies about the virus itself, its impact on society and the people who are infected.
“I don’t think there is any need for more zombie films,” Calvo said. “What always interested me is how people might react during the apocalypse and how the average person could be much more dangerous than any zombie or monster.”
Here are 20 non-zombie “virus movies” streaming on Prime that you can see right now.
A group of Brits in an apartment building awake to find that they have been sealed into their flat with no communication to the outside world. Patrolling the grounds around the building are people in Hazmat suits.
Photo by Vision Films
A survivor of a deadly virus is sent back in time by a scientist to stop the outbreak from ever happening.
Photo by Gravitas Ventures
A decade after a global epidemic that causes retrograde and anterograde amnesia, survivors are forced to go through life without recalling the past or creating new memories.
Photo by Slamdance Presents
Light of My Life (2019)
Oscar winner Casey Affleck stars as Caleb, a father surviving in the solitude of the wilderness with his young daughter Rag, whom he disguises as a boy. His actions come after a global plague has decimated most of the female population.
Photo by Saban Films
What Still Remains (2018)
After a plague spreads across the world, a young woman ends up at a nearby sanctuary run by religious zealots who are defending themselves from a faction known as the Berserkers. But who are the real monsters?
Photo by Gravitas Ventures
The South Korean film follows the citizens of a city near Seoul where a lethal, airborne virus infects the population.
Photo by CJ Entertainment
93 Days (2016)
Based on a true story, the Nigerian thriller stars Danny Glover (Lethal Weapon) as Benjamin Ohiaeri, a Nigerian doctor on the frontlines of the 2014 Ebola outbreak in Lagos, Nigeria, a city with a population of 20 million people.
Photo by Natives Filmworks
A group of teenagers is left to fend for themselves when an infection attacks them during a trip to a condemned lake.
Photo by Entertainment One
AB Negative (2019)
Set in a post-apocalyptic world destroyed by a blood infection, the Belgian film tells the story of two brothers fighting for survival against a dark syndicate known as the Leeches.
Photo by Indie Rights
Cold War (2017)
A young couple move in together and contract the “raccoon virus.” Sick at home, they find out how difficult living under one roof really is, especially when both occupants are not feeling very well.
Photo by Spaceship Town