Sunday, June 18, 2017

The Fly (1958)

IMDb plot summary: A scientist has a horrific accident when he tries to use his newly invented teleportation device.
Directed by Kurt Neumann. Starring David Hedison, Patricia Owens, Vincent Price, and Herbert Marshall.

This was nothing like I expected. For one thing, did you know Vincent Price isn't the Fly? I didn't. This is a dramatic tragedy more than a horror movie, going very slowly, building its characters and its tension bit by bit. I was expecting a lot more creepy imagery of man/bug hybrids, though I have a feeling the Cronenberg remake would deliver on that front. My overwhelming reaction to this was not horror or disgust (in the good way I expected) but such sadness. Both the scene where he writes his farewell love letter to his wife and the scene where they finally find the fly made me want to cry at this awful, tragic experiment gone wrong. It makes me think, in an odd way, of the Blair Witch Project, a similarly slow movie that obviously depends more on scares than this does, but both of them just made me profoundly sad at how badly awry these characters' lives had gone, and how easily all that awfullness could have been erased if they had just changed one thing about the way they did things in the past. I liked this a lot, and I feel like it's one that will really hold up to later rewatches.

4.5 stars.

How it entered my Flickchart:
The Fly > Beach Party
The Fly > Kolya
The Fly > Benny & Joon
The Fly < Zombieland
The Fly < Blue Jasmine
The Fly > Trust
The Fly < Welcome to Dongmakgol
The Fly < Babe
The Fly > Sabrina (1954)
The Fly < Mighty Aphrodite

Final spot: #281 out of 2630.

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