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-   -   FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986) (http://archives2.twoplustwo.com/showthread.php?t=364184)

diebitter 10-24-2005 07:49 AM

FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
The Fly, made in 1986 by the masterful David Cronenberg, is a remake of the 1950's Fly I'm sure many of us know and love.

The plot is changed somewhat from the original - no giant fly head on a man, for example. Here the fusion is at the molecular-genetic level - and here the horror is a growing one, and the man slowly realises something is going very, very wrong...

I love this movie - unashamedly. Why? It's a very effective horror with plenty of thrills and jumps and gross-out moments... but that's not it

It works as an allegory for all sorts of things? - AIDS; death and dying; ageing; general horror at the things one's own body can produce; hell, even of just fear of change... but that's not it.

It works very well as a movie anyway? Speeding through the plot quickly, getting to the punch, even taking time to develop drama and romance in the middle of a speeding melange of gross body-changes and vomiting, relentlessly paced, but pausing enough so each scene packs it punch pretty perfectly...but that's not it.

Great score, acting, directing, absolutely... but that's not it.

Okay, enough teasing, I love this movie most because of its dialogue. It's unrealistic movie dialogue, for sure, but boy, does it pack a punch. To me, it's like the Hamlet or Macbeth of horror films, dialogue that I remember and remember, even if I haven't seen it in a few years.

Examples? Here you go:
--------------
Seth Brundle: You have to leave now, and never come back here. Have you ever heard of insect politics? Neither have I. Insects... don't have politics. They're very... brutal. No compassion, no compromise. We can't trust the insect. I'd like to become the first... insect politician. Y'see, I'd like to, but... I'm afraid, uh...

Ronnie: I don't know what you're trying to say.

Seth Brundle: I'm saying... I'm saying I - I'm an insect who dreamt he was a man and loved it. But now the dream is over... and the insect is awake.

Ronnie: No. no, Seth...

Seth Brundle: I'm saying... I'll hurt you if you stay.
--------------
Seth Brundle: What's there to take? The disease has just revealed its purpose. We don't have to worry about contagion anymore... I know what the disease wants.

Ronnie: What does the disease want?

Seth Brundle: It wants to... turn me into something else. That's not too terrible is it? Most people would give anything to be turned into something else.

Ronnie: Turned into what?

Seth Brundle: Whaddaya think, a fly? Am I becoming a hundred-and-eighty-five-pound fly? No, I'm becoming something that never existed before. I'm becoming... Brundlefly. Don't you think that's worth a Nobel Prize or two?

--------------
Seth Brundle: You're afraid to dive into the plasma pool, aren't ya'? You're afraid to be destroyed and recreated,aren't ya? I'll bet you think you woke me up about the flesh, don't you? But you only know society's straight line about the flesh. You can't penetrate beyond society's sick, grave, fear of the flesh. Drink deep, or taste not, the plasma spring. Y'see what I'm sayin? And I'm not just talking about sex and penetration, I'm talking about penetration beyond the veil of the flesh. A deep penetrating dive into the plasma pool.
--------------


Okay, I know, this is more a love letter than a review, but you know what? Tell me I'm wrong, I dare ya! I double-dog dare ya!


OVERALL: 4.5/5
REWATCHABILITY: Would stand 3-monthly, but who's got time?

RATINGS (out of 5):
0 - This is a complete waste of time, and you will regret wasting it (** new addition **)
1 - don't bother unless no other options at all
2 - okay for a single watch, if you've got time
3 - Definite watch if you get a chance
4 - See it very soon, at least once before you die
5 - See it immediately, no excuses


Opinions/comments/arguments please, especially if you think I missed anything worth of discussion/expansion, or violently agree or disagree.

10-24-2005 08:22 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
I don't normally like creepy movies but if this is the Jeff Goldblum one then yeah it was really good. Excellent review. That one is definitely worth seeing again. Unfortunately now whenever I see Jeff Goldblum I get creeped out.

10-24-2005 08:36 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
You are wrong. 6/5.

diebitter 10-24-2005 08:39 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
littlelamb, unlike most n00bs, you are immediately okay in my book.

However 6/5 means the viewer needs to be shot through the head as soon as the film ends, so real life can't taint its beauty. I'm saving that for really good ones.

KaneKungFu123 10-24-2005 08:54 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
you should review the movie 28 days later.

diebitter 10-24-2005 08:56 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
you should review the movie 28 days later.

[/ QUOTE ]
Will do soon. Any other requests from anyone, PM me.

4_2_it 10-24-2005 08:57 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
I give it 4 big Fonzie ayes. Haven't seen it in a while, but I often think of the end (SPOLIER ALERT)



and the almost human look on his face as he helps Veronica prop up the shotgun to his head. Definitely a classic.

handsome 10-24-2005 10:53 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
Great movie.

slickpoppa 10-24-2005 10:57 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
The part where he vomits on the guys arm and leg have scarred me to this day.

imported_The Vibesman 10-24-2005 11:06 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
This movie represents some of the best work ever from Cronenberg, Davis and Goldblum, and is actually one of only about 3 or 4 movies I like Goldblum in. Funny because I almost watched it this weekend, but ended up going with something else instead.

Blarg 10-24-2005 01:40 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
I agree with your love for the film, and still remember the insect politician speech very, very fondly. It was chilling, yet obviously so painful for him to say. What a weird mix -- a guy being so afraid to make a threat that's at the same time such a devastating, horrible admission of loss -- the loss of his willpower and even entire humanity! And to do it to probably the one person he cares most about. To know the horror he is not only capable of but will shortly be unable to stop. It's a brilliant little speech, and Jeff Goldblum gave it so, so well. This was some of the best acting you could see, and amazingly enough, it was in a horror/sci-fi flick, the last place you usually expect to see something like that. For horror/sci-fi fans, a movie of this quality was a huge, unexpected gift.

I didn't know anyone who wasn't raving about the film when it came out and for quite a while after. Everyone loved this thing, and people were saying Goldblum definitely deserved an Oscar nomination. I agree; he did. Unfortunately, it seems to have somewhat gone the way of films that have come out in the last decade or two, being forgotten by those who didn't see it in the theater when it came out. I'm surprised when I bump into people who have never seen it, because it seems like blasphemy to me, and I wonder if maybe the insects have gotten to THEM.

Gina whatever her name is, the female lead, was good too, being genuinely emotional in some scenes in just the right way, and simply likeable in others. This very early piece was very close to the high point of her career, I think.

An amazingly good film. The script and the acting were of a practically unheard of level for anything remotely connected to horror or sci-fi. Incredibly watchable, a real joy.

Superfluous Man 10-24-2005 02:27 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
The part where he vomits on the guys arm and leg have scarred me to this day.

[/ QUOTE ]
Actually the part where he goes to the bar and snaps another dude's forearm has kept me from arm wrestling to this very day.

Boris 10-24-2005 02:31 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
the masterful David Cronenberg,

[/ QUOTE ]

You're drinking the kool-aid. Why? The Fly came out in 1986. He hasn't made a decent flick since then.

miajag81 10-24-2005 02:34 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
The part where he vomits on the guys arm and leg have scarred me to this day.

[/ QUOTE ]
Actually the part where he goes to the bar and snaps another dude's forearm has kept me from arm wrestling to this very day.

[/ QUOTE ]

Same here.

Blarg 10-24-2005 02:38 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
When he's pulling his teeth out got me really viscerally. You could really feel his misery about his own unstoppable and horribly gross decline.

diebitter 10-24-2005 02:56 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
the masterful David Cronenberg,

[/ QUOTE ]

You're drinking the kool-aid. Why? The Fly came out in 1986. He hasn't made a decent flick since then.

[/ QUOTE ]

He was masterful in executing this film. And Dead Ringers.

Dominic 10-24-2005 04:52 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
the masterful David Cronenberg,

[/ QUOTE ]

You're drinking the kool-aid. Why? The Fly came out in 1986. He hasn't made a decent flick since then.

[/ QUOTE ]

Dead Ringers
Spider
Existenz

ScottyP431 10-24-2005 04:58 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
Good call on existenz, very impressed when people have seen this

New001 10-24-2005 05:22 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
Good call on existenz, very impressed when people have seen this

[/ QUOTE ]

I wasn't very impressed with it. I think I've seen it twice, too. [img]/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]

fyodor 10-24-2005 05:33 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
I was just recommending some Cronenberg movies to someone last night after watching his latest - History of Violence.

Gotta love the George Chuvalo cameo in The Fly. For those who don't know, Chuvalo was the greatest heavyweight fighter to ever come out of Canada. No one could knock this guy down. He even fought Ali and went the distance. Anyhow he's the guy Brundlefly armwrestles with in the bar.

Jeremy Irons was brilliant in Dead Ringers and when he won the acadamy award the next year for a lesser role in a far inferior movie he thanked Cronenberg during his acceptance speech. I remember running across 2 teenage girls in a video store once and they were looking for a horror movie reccomendation. I happened to be standing there and Dead Ringers was on the shelf. I got them to take it. I often have wondered how creeped out they got.

For vintage Cronenberg, Videodrome and Scanners are classics. If you haven't seen them you should.

And how about Crash? Not the new movie by the same title but Cronenberg's film about people fascinated (obsessed) with car crashes. Without giving anything away let me just tell you it starts with a girl in an airplane hanger fondling the nose cone of a small jet. A guy comes up and starts banging her from behind. After that it gets a little weird.

Blarg 12-30-2005 08:22 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
Bumping this for my man diebitter, cuz we were talking about film reviews, and I remember this was one of his I really agreed with strongly.

And then on clicking up this link, I remembered how much the sense of daily loss reminded me of another of one of the films diebitter, in his good taste, reviewed, - The Incredible Shrinking Man. The haunting, terrible sense of daily diminishing and loss, so heartbreaking in the two of them if you let yourself open up to what the films are really all about. In the case of The Fly, the writing, directing, and Jeff Goldblum's great performance make it easy.

There is something in it of addiction, of moral compromise, of aging in a way that young OOT'ers may not understand. But for those of us who do, it's brilliant.

codewarrior 12-30-2005 08:44 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
Plus Crash has Holly Hunter in it. The NC-17 version is quite good, and very weird overall.

12-30-2005 08:48 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
I remember thinking Jeff Goldblum was awesome in this movie. Haven't seen it in ages though. Wonder why he doesn't make many films. He's quirky but I like him.

Vavavoom 12-30-2005 08:50 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
I remember thinking Jeff Goldblum was awesome in this movie. Haven't seen it in ages though. Wonder why he doesn't make many films. He's quirky but I like him.

[/ QUOTE ]

His best role was in Jurassic Park.... [img]/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img] <font color="white"> Or maybe not...Lol ! </font>

Blarg 12-30-2005 08:55 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
"You don't get out much, do you?", was one of Gena Davis's lines to him in this film. Along with some of his subsequent film roles, I think it permanently typecast him as "a bit off" in a way that limited the rest of his career.

I'm reminded of Peter Lorre and his heartstopping virtuosity in "M" at the very beginning of his career. It's not that Lorre couldn't possibly play another type of character. It's that nobody cared that he could, since he was so perfect at what he did. Lorre, like Goldblum, had almost no chance of escaping the doom of his own perfection.

diebitter 12-30-2005 08:59 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
I remember also really digging JG in a film from the same time as 'The Fly' - a BBC production about how Watson and Crick unravelled the secrets of DNA -Life Story

He was great as Watson, who by all accounts was also quirky and charismatic - perfect casting, I'd say [img]/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

PS. Blarg, your account box is full, will you empty out the [censored] please?

Blarg 12-30-2005 09:07 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
Dang, the BBC slaps American t.v. silly so damn hard. I wish we had regular access to it here. Life Story isn't available on Netflix ATM.

On the box full, sorry, I'm sentimental and a packrat. Emptied a few out anyway now though. The number you can keep is kind of absurd now.

12-30-2005 09:12 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]

It's not that Lorre couldn't possibly play another type of character. It's that nobody cared that he could, since he was so perfect at what he did. Lorre, like Goldblum, had almost no chance of escaping the doom of his own perfection.

[/ QUOTE ]

If that's true what a terrible shame. Wouldn't you love to see what Goldblum could do with another character? Man I would. Maybe he's been given opportunities but has blown them, maybe he really is too quirky to play more mainstream roles. I just don't get hollywood.

Diebitter I'd love to see him playing Watson. I'll bet he was great.

diebitter 12-30-2005 09:16 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]


Diebitter I'd love to see him playing Watson. I'll bet he was great.

[/ QUOTE ]

He was good. Actually, I only saw the film once (about 18 years ago!), and I remember parts of it vividly - I was doing evolutionary biology and genetics in my degree at the time, so it was doubly meaningful - and I don't think it's available anywhere, sadly [img]/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]

ChipWrecked 12-30-2005 09:30 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
[ QUOTE ]
Plus Crash has Holly Hunter in it. The NC-17 version is quite good, and very weird overall.

[/ QUOTE ]

IF you know that's what you're getting. If you mistakenly NetFlix it thinking you're going to watch the 2005 movie of the same name, it is apallingly awful. I hated it.

Seeing Holly Hunter getting repeatedly boned does have a strange fascination, I'll grant ya that.

Blarg 12-30-2005 09:44 AM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
J.G. Ballard, the writer of the original "Crash" whose name got ripped, was a very interesting sci-fi writer who could actually write and write very well, a real rarity in the genre. I hope we one day see some more of his stuff brought to film. I can't say I loved all of it, but his high points were pretty f*cking magnificent.

Haven't seen either version of Crash ATM. Read the first one, but it seemed untranslateable to film.

Re Goldblum - I'd love to see him in a role as good as The Fly again. We shouldn't have to put up with so many lesser stars when he's around. Typecasting can be ruinous.

Ulysses 12-30-2005 02:41 PM

Re: FILM REVIEW: The Fly (1986)
 
diebitter,

I am a big fan of your reviews! Keep 'em coming!


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