100 Days of Horror welcomes you to ... SATANFEST 2013

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"Y'all know me, know how I earn a livin'. I'll catch this bird for you, but it ain't gonna be easy. Bad fish! Not like going down to the pond and chasing bluegills and tommycods. This shark, swallow ya whole. Little shakin', little tenderizin', and down you go. And we gotta do it quick, that'll bring back the tourists, that'll put all your businesses on a payin' basis. But it's not gonna be pleasant! I value my neck a lot more than three thousand bucks, chief. I'll find him for three, but I'll catch him, and kill him, for ten. But you've gotta make up your minds. If you want to stay alive, then ante up. If you want to play it cheap, be on welfare the whole winter. I don't want no volunteers, I don't want no mates, there's too many captains on this island. Ten thousand dollars for me by myself. For that you get the head, the tail, the whole damn thing."

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

100 Days of Horror Day Eighteen: "The Fly!"

Oh, it's just another titillating Tuesday here on the farm, ladies and gents.

And is it over yet? Not by a long shot.

Well, here we are well into Week Three of this thing and yesterday I almost quit (again) just out of sheer frustration that I wouldn't be able to get to it in time. But, even after a marathon meeting in a nearby township (a 50-mile round trip, mind you), and then returning home to write the damn thing, I found myself with ample time to indulge in the "Satanic Rites of Dracula."

It's also hard to find the heart to do this when I am just ... I don't know. Unhappy? Depressed? Unenthused? Is that even a word?

It's funny - I feel depressed, but it isn't that general uneasiness that some sufferers experience. In fact I can narrow my problem down to a precise point, but it isn't something to discuss on here. I guess some things have to be private. But I want to make one thing very clear, here: this in NO WAY has to do with my penis and/or my sexual prowess. Let's be aware of that and move on.

In fact, let's move on to today's feature - the inimitable David Cronenberg's "The Fly!" This movie SCARED THE SHIT out of me as a youngster. Not like, "Oooh it's gonna get me!" scared, but still fairly disturbed. It ain't no "Nightmare on Elm Street" or "Friday the 13th." It's a serious film that wants to terrify you, not make you jump at a startling noise. I hope everyone watches and enjoys it! The Skinny below!

The Fly (1986): Directed by David Cronenberg. Starring Gena Davis, Jeff Goldblum

The Skinny: This is the remake of the original 50s sci-fi horrorfest with Vincent Price, given an ultramodern twist. Jeff Goldblum stars as Seth Brundle, a brilliant scientist on the cusp of a groundbreaking discovery – teleportation. However, when a common housefly gets into the pod with him during a test run, the promising young scientist is subject to a series of horrific changes.

What’s Good: This is the second David Cronenberg film on the list, and probably his best film until 2007’s “Eastern Promises.” And to me, this is true horror: it’s science gone wrong, it’s the frailty of the human condition, it’s creepy-crawly bugs that make me wanna sick on myself. And it’s Goldblum’s tour-de-force performance – one he has yet to even come close to topping. Yes, he’s good in “Independence Day,” yes he’s just wonderful in the “Jurassic Park” films. But goddamn it, in “The Fly,” dude simply is Seth Brundle and – ultimately – the monstrous “Brundlefly.” There’s never a moment’s hesitation in believing that Goldblum truly is the fast-talking, charismatic Brundle, including the hint of madness that plays at the edges of his every gesture and word.

What’s Bad: Not a damn thing. Gory? Disturbing? Graphic? Yes. And all plusses in this category. I have nothing bad to say about this film, except it spawned a very inferior sequel, so don’t bother with it, Even if it has Eric Stoltz in it.

Why We Love It: Jeff Goldblum makes the movie. In the few brief moments he is offscreen, you can’t wait for him to return. Also, the special effects were top of the line for the time, and the final product of Brundlefly and the transportation pod fused into one is one of the more horrific sights you’ll even encounter in cinema. Not enough good things can be said about this movie.

Memorable Stuf: When Brundlefly/pod creature places the end of a shotgun to it’s head and bids Davis to pull the trigger, you can see the anguish and pain in the “creature’s” eyes. It’s haunting and sticks with you for days.