AFI Fest 2012: “Antiviral” And “Caesar Must Die”

In diagnosing a cultural affliction without so much as mentioning a possible cure or even treatment, Brandon Cronenberg’s Antiviral (above) coldly suggests that it’ll only continue to spread. The outlandish-but-believable premise – involving a high-end clinic that harvests and sells celebrities’ infections to their obsessed fans – brings to mind both Children of Men and, of all things, Idiocracy for how depressingly realistic its vision of the near future ends up being. We want to think that something like this could never happen, but there’s more than a little evidence to the contrary. The fact that nearly every element of the film exists solely to either comment on or expand its central point at times makes it feel a bit one-note, which is to say that what’s onscreen is engaging more often than not but also leaves little to the imagination both visually and thematically. It’s also
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