Son of 31 Nights, 31 Frights: The Fly

Son of 31 Nights, 31 Frights

In observance of that autumn spell when we celebrate the primal, compulsive instinct of fear, Rainestorm once more highlights 31 days of spooky scares to season the eerie atmosphere of Halloween.

For those who tuned in last year, I subjected you to a daily dose of diabolical dread and devilish distress. Just as every good horror movie deserves an inferior sequel, I offer this follow-up of also-rans, not bads, and perhaps a couple of you’ve-gotta-be-kidding-mes.

Unleashed: 1986

Jeff Goldblum in 'The Fly'

Oh my god! It's hideous! Kill it! Kill iiiiit!

What evil lurks: In the remakes-can-be-good file comes this doozy of a gorefest from the captain of creepy, David Cronenberg. Retaining the basic foundation of the 1958 original, he amps up the flesh-defying transformation and truly heartbreaking tragedy. Utilizing Howard Shore’s bombastic score to soulful effect, the slow disintegration of lone and lonely genius Seth Brundle (Jeff Goldblum) is simultaneously horrifying and wrenching. With his experiment as a backdrop, Brundle personifies his deteriorating madness in its purest form, just as he finds true companionship and romance with beautiful journalist, Veronica (Geena Davis). Goldblum is magnificent as the Gregor Samsa-like man who must come to terms with the physical and philosophical tribulations of becoming an insect, including his chilling observations on the absence of insect politics.

Highlight from hell: Veronica’s nightmare, wherein she imagines giving birth to a… well… you figure it out.

Terrifying trivia: With its tragic themes and passionate score, it’s little wonder that composer Howard Shore adapted The Fly into an opera.

Diabolical dialogue: “I’m saying… I’ll hurt you if you stay.”

Son of: The Thing (1982). It’s difficult to imagine that The Fly could have ever been made without the groundbreaking work of Rob Bottin in John Carpenter’s remake of the 1950s classic. Taking his lead, Cronenberg puts the creative gore into his own phenomenal adaptation.

Shoddy sequel syndrome: Actor John Getz is a little too repulsive as Veronica’s publisher and lecherous ex-lover.

  • Kat Stevens

    I remember seeing this movie at the theater and had a pregnant woman sitting next to me, eating the entire time. Gross.