Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Fly: A Day in the Life of Brundlefly.

You may recall that time I watched the Brood and felt a bit on the nauseous side after seeing Nola lick her beastie fetus clean. Well apparently Cronenberg's true goal in life is to make me faint, vomit, and punch a baby in the face all at the same time. While he may not have accomplished this goal in its entirety- he did come pretty close--to whomever's baby I punched, I apologize.

The Fly is one of those remakes that exemplifies the art of taking a movie and making it completely your own. Gone are the melodramatic tones of Vincent Price and his brother's fly mittens, and present is Jeff Goldblum's decaying flesh- and vomit inducing puss filled fly body. While the original Fly is a classic in my mind- Cronenberg's Fly is a completely different ballgame- fusing elements of hardcore science, sexual intercourse with a Brundlefly- and the depressing and tragic truth of the inevitable outcome of the situation. Sure we may have made a frowny face when Andre (the scientist, not me silly!) gets his head smashed in the press- and the fly with Andre's head gets smushed by a rock---but here in Cronenberg's nightmare we take a step back and catch our breath.

While the plot can be summed up in one screen shot--
(Which by the way I would like on a T-shirt or poster- thanks)--the film unveils layer upon layer of simply amazing special effects, make up and drama. I'm still wowed that I was able to keep my Mexican burrito feast down. When we see Andre unveil his "fly" head we laugh and in some cases start searching Ebay looking for "Fly mittens & fly head mask" whereas when Brundlefly is revealed- albeit painfully and slowly---we want to cry.

The movie is awesome- in case you haven't caught on yet and I honestly think the gore hounds of today's horror movies could learn a few things from this movie. The finger nail scene was possibly the worst thing I have ever willingly looked at- and yes I'm counting the poop feast from Salo. Something about entire fingernails coming off has never been my strong suit and the fact that he did it with all of his fingers was....awful. Then there's of course the ear fallling off, and the Brundlefly vomit....bleck.

But then there's also this subtle air of comedy in the film- and I couldn't help but laugh at the scenes of early Brundlefly coming into his own, experimenting with gymnastics, arm wrestling till the other person's bones pop out of their arms, picking up chicks and banging them for no good reason, and the constant hyped up flow of energy that he suffered. It was like watching a poodle on steroids suffering from Jessie Spano syndrome. Yes, Yes Brundlefly was quite the excited fly wasn't he? And how could you not feel at least some remorse for the creature? It became very clear through his darkest hours that living the life of Brundlefly would be no easy task- in fact it would suck. But just because it was an awful experience, doesn't mean we can't relive some of the brighter moments....

Brundlefly has some fun.

Brundlefly remains studious.

Brundlefly learns to type.

Brundlefly readies a gift for the Tooth Fairy.

Ugh. Not you The Rock.

Brundlefly learns how to keep his ear fresh.

A moment of silence for Brundlefly please.


Christine Hadden said...

I totally forgot how utterly disgusting this movie really is... in a good way of course.
Gah! The ear. And the persistent vomiting. And the fingernails? OMG.


Evil Dave said...

I saw this as a double feature with Aliens - at a $1.00 theater! Those were the days.

Yes, lots of gore for the gore hounds, yet it moved the story. Jeff Goldblum as a scientist always works as he has that stammering, tangental delivery that drips with academia. Geena Davis puts in a decent performance as the reporter/love interest.

The transformation from Brundle to Fly is a story in itself. You hate him, you pity him, you fear him. Ironically, the more he becomes the fly the more sympathy you feel for him.

I guess on the bright side if he had ever fully turned into a fly he would live what? Two days tops?

The Mike said...

This is one of the few movies I'm repulsed by. It's definitely good at what it does.

Tash said...

I felt this weird sense of optimism throughout most of the movie, I truly thought that he would figure out a way to change himself back...even though I knew better.

Franco Macabro said...

I love this movie, on top of all the cool make up effects, we get a very well written film.

Love it when Brundle goes into his whole "insect politics" speech.

Chris H said...

Mind-blowing film! I don't even know how Cronenberg got away with it. If Chris Walas' special effects aren't an argument to keep all CGI out of monster flicks, I don't know what is. Astounding work of horror filmmaking all around.

This is one of my favorite reviews of yours, Andre.

B-Sol said...

Hey, it's my old buddy Dwayne! :-)

kevessence said...

Great review! Great movie! Cronenberg is the master of grotesque transformations-fingernails, ears, M. Butterfly...

David said...

I just nominated you for a blogging award, as I love your writing

Bill Dan Courtney said...

Not sure if you have ever seen the third installment of the classic Fly series called Curse of the Fly. It is totally separate from the first two and not really a sequel. It was shot in black and white and never deals with a gene spliced fly but with the results of the transporters effects on the people who use it over and over. It is a creepy film and while The Fly (with Price) I would call more of a sci-fi flick The Curse was a horror film with heavy and depressing overtones. A forgotten film but the scariest of the three classics in my opinion.


Andre said...

Bill- I have not seen any of the "sequels" but I read a lot about them and am intrigued. Thanks for the heads up, I will definitely be checking those out!

: said...

One of my Top 5 Favorite Movies of All Time. Yep, I love it that much.

It's so utterly terrifying, but at the same time so sad (because Brundle knows what he has become, and that his human side will only be in control for a short while longer), when he tells Ronnie: "I'll hurt you if you stay."



Kakapants said...

It's been awhile, but If I remember correctly, a reviewer (when The Fly was first released) wrote about this movie that it's less a horror movie and more a Greek tragedy. And a love story. And I agree. The melancholy always got to me more than the gore. The Fly and The Dead Zone were related to each other in that way. They were sad more than horrific. And they both ended with 'I love you'.