David Cronenberg‘s disgusting, exhausting and completely brilliant examination of a scientist’s physical and mental deterioration upon attempting to “better mankind” is a sci-fi horror masterpiece (and quite the endurance test for those with weak stomaches). Jeff Goldblum, in a career-best performance as Dr. Seth Brundle, takes us through the emotional ringer after his DNA gets mixed with that of a common housefly, the unfortunate result of testing his teleportation device on himself (a reactionary move fueled by alcohol and sexual jealousy — ah, human weaknesses!); he looks upon his mutating body first with awe, then with fear and finally with a droll fascination, turning his bathroom cabinet into a museum dedicated to the parts that no longer belong to him (sorry, fella, flies don’t need penises) and adapting his video diary into a twisted children’s show in which he demonstrates to all the kids out there how “Brundlefly” digests his food. The Fly is oh so many things: a heartbreaking metaphor for how our bodies eventually fail us; a moving and tragic love story; a fascinating commentary on our sometimes inexplicable desire to constantly change and better ourselves… and it has a scene where a human-fly hybrid vomits acid bile all over a dude’s hand, dissolving it into putrid, steaming goo. It’s awesome.
Leave a comment