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The Fly (1986)

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  • The Fly (1986)

    The Fly is a great film. A vast improvement over the original as evidenced by the change from having the main protagonist's transformation be a swapping of body parts; to a DNA combination of both the fly and a human.

    Croenenberg saw a lot of his own themes in the script of The Fly and its this that makes his adaptation of the script so sound. If it contained things that Croenenberg hadn't dealt with in his previous films, it may have been a little harder to put his own stamp on the material without it taking away from that material. This is not to say that this film wouldn't be as good if Croenenberg wasn't able to utilise his previous experience with the issues of physicality, psychology and the fears that we, as humans, are built with.

    Another theme which is prevalent in the fly is the theme of interpersonal relationships, in this case, a romantic relationship. The relationship dissolves and deteriorates as does the physical aspects of the characters. I think that's a potent theme within the film that makes the events more horrific, and yet, sympathetic in relation to Seth Brundle and his transformation from human to fly.

    Croenenberg mentions on the DVD commentary that he now views, within the film, a theme of mortality that he didn't see when he made The Fly. I agree with him because you see that Seth has become diseased, he's beginning to be free of his mortal coil, his mortality is under attack; whether that be his mortality as a human or his ultimate fate as a fly.

    The performances in this film are brilliant. Jeff Goldblum plays the character of Seth Brundle with a certain strength that outweighs his "nerdiness". He's intelligent and merged with that strength it makes you sympathise with him as he deteriorates and metamorphosises (sp?) into the fly; he loses his intelligence because he is no longer human, in mind or body.

    Geena Davis plays Veronica quite sweetly and gives her (as one would expect, given the circumstances she finds herself in) a fragility and uselessness as she comes to realise that she is losing the one she loves to something beyond her or anyone's control.

    John Getz plays Stathis as an asshole, a bitter (in my opinion) character because he can't face the fact that Veronica is no longer in love with him and is free of him. He showcases a fragility as he doesn't want her out of his life, almost an innocence in a way. At first you see him as the antagonist because he's the third leg in the love triangle and is opposed to Veronica and Seth, thus the conflict between the three. At the end of the film Stathis becomes the "hero" in a sense because Seth (the protagonist) has lost that position parallel to his deterioration and metamorphosis into the fly.

    The music is another great aspect of this film. Howard Shore is a great composer and it shows in The Fly. His score is moving, terrifying, sad and fits the emotions and the conflicts present. My favourite piece of score is the scene in which Seth tries to get Veronica to go through the teleportation process to gain the "benefits" he has inherited. As Croenenberg states in the DVD commentary; the music is operatic. I feel that the scene wouldn't work as well without that part of the score. Croenenberg also states on the DVD that when he spoke to Mel Brooks about the music in that scene (Brooks thought that the music didn't need to be operatic because its just Seth walking down the street) is that it is Seth heading towards his destiny.

    Overall this film was horrific, sad, gross to some extent and the characters were played with such strength and carried the story well. The effects were well done and are much better than any CGI you see today. Using CGI to make The Fly would detract from the emotional components its made up with. Not to forget the gore of course, which is done really well and doesn't disappoint.

    I give this 9/10.

    What are your thoughts on The Fly?

  • #2
    I mostly agree with you!

    I love how the film manages to create some truly gross out sequences, yet sucks you in to the plight of the characters and leaves you feeling emotionally drained at the end.

    Brilliant performances from both Jeff Goldblum and Geena Davis.

    i'm not bad, i'm just misunderstood...


    • #3
      A superb remake, and one of Cronenberg's best(Dead Ringers is my personal favorite).
      John Getz's arm and leg doused with fly vomit will forever be remembered...


      • #4
        The special effects were really good. I remember when his ear fell off. Oh man that was just grose. He was one ugly sob too. I never saw part II. I heard it's about his son as a fly. I'm not sure though. Has anyone seen part 2?


        • #5
          I ABSOLUTELY love this movie, i give it 10/10. Fantastic, frightening, hilarious, gross, emotionally deep, moving, horrific all at once. This to me is Crononberg's best.
          2014 Horror Draft:

          Psycho (1960) - Alfred Hitchcock
          Bride of Frankenstein (1932) - James Whale
          I Saw the Devil (2010) - Kim Jee-woon
          Body Bags (1993) - John Carpenter
          Beyond the Black Rainbow (2010) - Panos Cosmatos
          Halloween II (1981) - Rick Rosenthal
          Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (1992) - David Lynch
          The Descent (2005) - Neil Marshall
          Cemetary Man (1994) - Michele Soavi
          Cabin Fever (2002) - Eli Roth


          • #6
            The Fly is one of my all-time favs. Cronenberg at his best.


            • #7
              Originally posted by Mr. Sawyer
              The special effects were really good. I remember when his ear fell off. Oh man that was just grose. He was one ugly sob too. I never saw part II. I heard it's about his son as a fly. I'm not sure though. Has anyone seen part 2?
              Yeah, and it pales to the original. Eric Stoltz plays Seth Brundle's son Martin who's kept as an experiment(to which he's almost oblivious to) by a biogen company, who has accelerated age, and begins to change into BrundleFly..
              The movie is not bad, and is very gory in parts..

              Spoiler: the lift sequence where some guy's head squirts out like a ripe melon was rather sickening and the fly vomit on the face would make any gore fan happy.

              I also had a thing for Daphne Zuniga, the love interest in the movie(better known as Princess Vespa in Spaceballs)... where is she now?


              • #8
                One of the rare remakes that actually blows the original out of the water (and I liked that one too). Only Cronenberg's twisted mind could have done that.


                • #9
                  A truly great remake. Too bad the fly 2 sucked.


                  • #10
                    The Fly is the best horror movie of the 1980's, as well as the best remake ever. It's also one of Cronenberg's masterpieces, Dead Ringers being the other.
                    HOOP-TOBER 2.0 - LETTERBOX'D - DVD/BLU


                    • #11
                      Damn man I didnt even read what you wrote, way to much writting man. i am just replying to the thread topic.

                      The FLY is a great film, one of my favorite remakes ( The THING being 1st also IOTBS, NOTLD 1990's and Blob are excellent as well )and one of my favorite well top 20 horror films all time. its genious and perfect. No flaws.IMO.


                      • #12
                        Yup, it's a masterpiece. Watching a man turn into an insect has never been as gut wrenching and awesome. Goldblum gave us one of the most tragic figures ever in cinema. I love it.


                        Recent Flicks
                        Jurassic World - 7/10
                        Speed - 8.5/10
                        John Wick - 9.5/10
                        The Omen III: The Final Conflict - 7/10
                        Interstellar - 8/10


                        • #13
                          This is one of the greatest remakes ever made. I thought effects were amazing and the acting was great. I cant think of a single person that doesnt enjoy this movie.

                          Resonance - Fusion - Selection - Conception - Evolution - Liberation


                          • #14
                            What more can be said? Its a great movie. Great screenplay, great actors, and a very good director.


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Dismal
                              A truly great remake. Too bad the fly 2 sucked.
                              Yeah that was waste of film.