Outbreak Blu-ray Review – Tense 1995 Virus Spreading Thriller

In my last movie review I took a look at Contagion (2011) and whilst I found it to be well made I can’t say it’s a film I enjoyed. This time I’m going for the more Hollywood approach to the disaster movie with Outbreak (1995) starring Dustin Hoffman, Rene Russo, Morgan Freeman and Donald Sutherland. Here is my Outbreak blu-ray review.

outbreak blu-ray review
Picture: Warner Bros
  • Outbreak (1995)
  • US Import – Region Free
  • Genre: Thriller
  • Directed by Wolfgang Petersen
  • UK Rating N/A
  • Discs: 1
  • Released By Warner Bros
  • Blu-ray Released: N/A


When the Motaba virus is brought into the United States via a white-headed capuchin monkey it mutates and becomes airborne. This results in an outbreak in a small town. The military and CDC are mobilised to try and contain the outbreak but will they be in time and just what do the military’s top brass know about it? Do they really know more than they aren’t letting on?

Style / Direction

Outbreak (1995) was directed by Wolfgang Petersen with Michael Ballhaus handling the cinematography. This is far more your typical Hollywood disaster movie in terms of look and feel rather than the bleak reality of Contagion (2011).

Music / Audio Effects

James Newton Howard provides the music.

Acting / Characters

Dustin Hoffman drives the search for a cure as Colonel Sam Daniels and he’s the perfect choice for this particular character. Meanwhile Morgan Freeman as his boss Brigadier General Billy Ford is similarly brilliant. I mean is there a film in which Freeman being in it hasn’t improved it? I don’t think so!

Donald Sutherland takes on the role of the film’s bad guy as Major General Donald McClintock. He does this very well as his character seems more interested in covering his own back than the saving the innocent lives of a small town.

Rene Russo plays Dr. Roberta Keough who’s also Sam Daniels ex wife and medical equal. This love story plays out as the virus spreads with both Hoffman’s and Russo’s character forced into confronting what really matters to both of them. The acting all-round is top notch and that really does help to keep you fully invested in the story as well as those individual characters.

outbreak blu-ray review
Picture: Warner Bros


  • Dustin Hoffman as Colonel Sam Daniels
  • Rene Russo as Dr. Roberta “Robby” Keough
  • Morgan Freeman as Brigadier General Billy Ford
  • Donald Sutherland as Major General Donald “Donnie” McClintock
  • Kevin Spacey as Lieutenant Colonel Casey Schuler
  • Cuba Gooding Jr. as Major Salt
  • Patrick Dempsey as James “Jimbo” Scott
  • Zakes Mokae as Dr. Benjamin Iwabi
  • Malick Bowens as Dr. Raswani
  • Susan Lee Hoffman as Dr. Lisa Aronson
  • Benito Martinez as Dr. Julio Ruiz
  • Bruce Jarchow as Dr. Mascelli
  • Leland Hayward III as Henry Seward
  • Daniel Chodos as Rudy Alvarez
  • Dale Dye as Lieutenant Colonel Briggs
  • Diana Bellamy as Mrs. Pananides
  • J. T. Walsh as White House Chief of Staff

Conclusion: Outbreak (1995) Film Review

I can honestly say I enjoyed this film far more than Contagion. This felt more escapism than reality and that’s what I was really looking for. The casting choices of Hoffman, Russo, Freeman and Sutherland are all excellent. This really does drive the film and story on to an exciting climax and conclusion.

outbreak blu-ray review
Picture: Warner Bros

If you’ve enjoyed my Outbreak Blu-ray review so far you may want to check out the following films:

Conclusion: Outbreak Blu-ray Review

I had to obtain the US Import version which region free as Outbreak doesn’t appear to have had a UK blu-ray that I could find. The picture quality is excellent but there are no extras included. Actually that’s rather a blessing as I don’t really want any more documentaries on virus outbreaks.

outbreak blu-ray review
Picture: Warner Bros

Popcorn Cinema Movie Rating: Outbreak (1995)



Outbreak (1995) Blu-ray is available now from Amazon.

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outbreak blu-ray review

Outbreak (1995) Film Trailer

For those of you yet to see the film I’ll leave you with a little taster…

Clip NOT representative of the Blu-ray version

That concludes my Outbreak Blu-ray review, I’m aiming to review more thrillers soon. What’s next? Check back soon…

What Do You Think?
Summary: Outbreak (1995) Blu-ray Review
outbreak blu-ray review

Movie title: Outbreak (1995)

Movie description: The Motaba virus is brought into the United States via a white-headed capuchin monkey

Duration: 128 mins

Director(s): Wolfgang Petersen

Actor(s): Dustin Hoffman, Rene Russo, Morgan Freeman, Donald Sutherland, Cuba Gooding Jr., Kevin Spacey

Genre: Thriller

  • Movie Rating
  • Blu-ray Picture Rating


More escapism than reality and that’s fin by me!


Excellent Cast Compelling Story


Close To Real World Events