(1986)

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

When Seth Brundle makes a huge scientific and technological breakthrough in teleportation, he decides to test it on himself. Unbeknownst to him, a common housefly manages to get inside the device and the two become one.

_**Slowly turning into a monster, aka slowly succumbing to age**_
An eccentric scientist living in a warehouse laboratory in a big city in the Northeast (Jeff Goldblum) discovers how to teleport objects, which draws the attention of a journalist (Geena Davis). Everything is going fine until he foolishly uses his invention on himself and a pesky fly inadvertently teleports with him. John Getz is on hand as the woman’s editor while Joy Boushel has a notable small role as Tawny.
"The Fly" (1986) has a lot of devotees presumably because of director/writer David Cronenberg, but I found it less effective compared to the 1958 version with Vincent Price. Despite the gory state-of-the-art effects, it’s just not as compelling or horrifying (especially that final scene in the original). The one-dimensional locations are also a turn-off: Excluding the great bar scene the whole movie takes place in a grungy lab or a swank office building.
The cast trilogy is exceptionally tall. While Goldblum (6’4½”) is serviceable and gives it his all, he’s not leading man material, although he’s fine in secondary roles. And I was never big on Davis, but she’s a’right I guess. At least the two absolutely look & act like they were meant for each other.
In its favor, the movie is a metaphor for how aging & disease slowly destroys the body. Despite the sickening visuals, it’s heartbreaking and tragic, which you might not expect in a sci-fi flick about a guy who morphs into a fly. It thankfully avoids the rut of camp and melodrama.
The film runs 1 hour, 36 minutes, and was shot in Toronto with studio work done in nearby Kleinburg.
GRADE: B-/C+

SLM Production Group, Brooksfilms by David Cronenberg, George Langelaan, Charles Edward Pogue.
Stars: Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz.

Genres: Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi

Keywords: monster experiment mutant mutation transformation to beam remake creature scientist bodily dismemberment parasite underneath skin fly the insect animal horror melting

08/15/1986

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