Over New Years, I was awarded with some generous free time to sit back with a few (or more, don’t judge!) brews and some strange flicks. For whatever reason, unbeknownst to myself, I decided to do a little The Fly marathon. This includes both the original The Fly (1958) with Vincent Price, The Fly (1986) with Jeff Goldblum, and The Fly 2 (1989) with Eric Stoltz. And it was quite the adventure, if I do say so myself.
The Fly (1958):
This movie was a strangely enjoyable classic picture with Vincent Price in, as usual, a quasi lead role. From what I gathered while watching it, The Fly, played by David Hedison. A nose to the grind stone old fashion, not-so-mad scientist, was the lead. However, arguably, you could say his wife, Helene Delambre (played by the ever talented Patricia Owens) was the true lead in this post Atomic Age science fiction thriller. If you want a fully extended synopsis, visit Rotten Tomatoes. The movie is obviously a classic with an already high rating on RT at 95% approval with critics and %75 with audiences. If, like me, you’ve seen Cronenberg’s version beforehand, you might lose your patience waiting for the “monster” to appear on screen. But when he does…oh baby! Classic monster effects and actually, considering the era, not half bad. The one part that really creeped me out was at the end when they discover the pint size fly with the human head in a spiders web. Overall, I’d give this original 4/5 stars, perhaps 4.5/5 if they had released it in black and white instead of techno color.
The Fly (1986):
Not a fare comparison. So I’ll judge this one by its own merit. As its own film. And ladies and gentlemen, what’s not to love about 1986 classic Cronenberg? The odd Canadian director was on fire back in the 80’s. The Brood is another bizarre favorite of mine. I wonder what ever happened to him? Anyhow, this film has been on my top ten list for some time. The build up of suspense, what’s Brundle going to look like next? Etc. Etc. And best of all, who doesn’t love some shirtless Goldblum action? Also, the practical effects are top notch, Carpenter’s The Thing top notch, and if you know me at all, a statement like that means a lot of praise!! The best part, again as with the original, was the end sequence. Except this time, we get the entire monster and not just a head and an arm. The final transformation scene is breathtakingly horrific! If you haven’t seen this movie…God, where have you been?!? I give this gem 5/5 stars!
The Fly 2 (1989):
And here is where things start to go down hill. As with most, if not all, sequels, it was a total lackluster. They brought back that one dude who got his hand and foot melted off my Brundle spit and some flash backs via video recordings of the Cronenberg OG, but that’s about it. Now, to give them credit, they pretty much pick up were the last one left off. Or rather, nine months later, to be exact. And the one thing that truly saved this movie, as what made the last one awesome, was the practice effects. And there was more monsters, which was also nice. The dog-creature was spectacular. You really did feel sorry for the damn thing. It kind of reminded me of the dogs from The Thing. The final transformation scene with the fly was interesting, but I the eyes looked cartoon-ish. If they had gone with the original design from Brundle-fly, it would have been magnificent. Now, the final act transformation was brutal and the pan out with the monster slurping up his soup while being watched from the observation deck was pungent with social satire. I give this take 3/5 stars.
So as marathons go, this one wasn’t too bad. What are some of your favorite Cronenberg flicks? List them below in the comments section or hit me up on twitter!
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