The germs are coming! The germs are coming! Life pretty much took the lead this week in determining what would make a good double feature. For the first time in eons, I've been sidelined with a hellish cold, while some other friends suffer colds and fevers, and two tykes I know fight off pneumonia. This just hasn't been a healthy holiday season. So, in honor of colds, coughing, and other temporary maladies, I give you two films about dastardly killer germs. One is serious, one is goofy, and both should make you feel better about your present sickly condition. On the one hand, we've got a woman allergic to life in Safe, and on the other, a young cutie with no immunities with Bubble Boy. So, grab your popcorn and tissues, curl up, and let your body fight off the killer common cold while you watch these flicks.


The trailer certainly amps up the camp, but Todd Haynes' 1995 film is a smidge more serious than its retro trailer would have you believe. Julianne Moore stars as a soft-spoken California housewife, Carol White, who becomes increasingly ill. While her doctor finds nothing wrong, her symptoms get worse and she discovers that she's environmentally ill. Basically, everything about our chemical life is making her sick. Or, that is what she believes. In an attempt to get better, she moves to a New Age center housed in the desert for people like her.

Coming from Haynes, who also directed Moore in Far From Heaven, and is generating a lot of Oscar buzz with his Bob Dylan flick, I'm Not There, this isn't a germy thriller with a typical path and neatly wrapped-up ending. It's a movie of maybes and strangeness, with an eerie buzz to remind you that there's always something to make us sick out there.

A Barbie video introduction to the film by Todd Haynes.

Carol White chokes on all those darned toxins.

And for something a bit different...

Haynes' Barbie-riffic Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story Pt. 1 a href="">Bubble Boy

There's a pretty decent chance that you haven't seen Bubble Boy. Critics ravaged it and the flick just seemed like one of those terrible comedies that would make you mourn the end of solid American cinema. However, there's still something entirely addictive and endearing to Jake Gyllenhaal's take on a boy living in a plastic bubble. He plays Jimmy Livingston, a boy without immunities who blissfully lives his life in a specially-sealed bubble room with his passive father and domineering Christian mother (Swoosie Kurtz). However, the one thing that makes him sad -- his growing love for the girl next door (Marley Shelton), who in turn keeps busy with her jerk of a boyfriend. When they get a little older and she gets engaged, Jimmy makes himself a bubble suit and sets out to stop the wedding and profess his love.

Between a cult that follows Fabio, Danny Trejo's vato cutting, a faux ransom letter ridiculously signed "The Jews," and Gyllenhaal's giggly exuberance, Bubble Boy grows on you. Or, at the very least, it offers a lead who really makes the most of things even though he's trapped in plastic.

"Just say the Pledge of Allegiance over and over until it goes away." (Sort of NSFW)

Bubble Boy steps out into the world...and into some poop.


Jimmy rocks out to Land of the Lost.