Viral Fungus Among Us

History buffs and flower-power vets of the ´60s remember America’s all-consuming fascination with the space race and its mad scramble to monopolize the world’s nuclear warheads -- that is, until a different fixation oozed into public consciousness: biological warfare. Michael Crichton’s 1969 sci-fi techno-thriller novel The Andromeda Strain is more than just pages ripe with sickeningly-antiseptic rooms, hermetically-sealed underground labs, gooey green alien viruses, and scientists yielding to a rigorous 16-hour sanitizing program that filled its pages: it is the perfect barometer for an era of American Cold War paranoia. And Robert Wise’s 1971 film adaptation followed suit; in fact, it may be even better if you like ´50s B-movie throwback dialogue like “Good God – the bacteria is growing!” (Ah, pure camp heaven.) But don’t take our word for it -- catch the Weston Branch Library (4205 Bonaventure Blvd., Weston) FREE screening this afternoon from 3 to 5:15 p.m. to celebrate International Literacy Day, then pick up Crichton’s infectious bestseller for a comparison. Call 954-389-2098 x-243, or visit
Sat., Sept. 8, 3 p.m.
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Phillip Valys