'Contagion' review round-up: Is Soderbergh's latest a viral hit?

Finally, a movie has come along that can dethrone the summer juggernaut that is " The Help." We can't believe we just said that...

Steven Soderbergh's " Contagion" opens this weekend boasting all the elements of a summer blockbuster: big name director, huge epic event and an all-star cast that reads like a Oscar red carpet checklist ( Matt Damon, Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Winslet). But is it worth braving a hot car ride to the multiplex? Here are some reviews to help you decide, but be warned -- we do our best to be impartial so you'll just have to make up your dang mind:

  • Los Angeles Times: "Soderbergh's made a film you may not want to watch but you can't stop yourself from staring it."
  • NY Daily News: "By the halfway mark, fans of apocalyptic cinema wind up part of the body count...There's a sense of dread in "Contagion," but it never spreads to us."
  • IGN: "One of the smarter matinee entertainments to come from Warner Bros...a dense, globe-trotting thriller that bests any previous 'virus' movies (Sorry, Outbreak)."
  • Orlando Sentinel: "Soderbergh struggles with the whole empathy thing...too many characters, too little time to care..."
  • Entertainment Weekly: "B+...a scare-the-crap-out-of-you medical thriller about a viral pandemic that will have the immediate post-screening effect of causing a handwashing stampede."

Photo/Video credit: Warner Bros