|Distributor:||20th Century Fox|
Seth Brundle, a brilliant but eccentric scientist attempts to woo investigative journalist Veronica Quaife by offering her a scoop on his latest research in the field of matter transportation, which against all the expectations of the scientific establishment have proved successful. Up to a point. Brundle thinks he has ironed out the last problem when he successfully transports a living creature, but when he attempts to teleport himself a fly enters one of the transmission booths, and Brundle finds he is a changed man.
David Cronenberg’s 1986 remake of the science fiction classic about a scientist who accidentally swaps body parts with a fly is both smart and terrifying: an allegory for the awful processes of slow death and a monster movie with a tragic spin. Jeff Goldblum gives a masterful performance as a sweet, nerdy scientist whose romance with a writer (Geena Davis) makes him more fully alive. Next thing you know, a tiny oversight in an experiment causes him to transmogrify, gradually, into something more like an insect than a human. This is Cronenberg (Scanners, Videodrome) country, so expect The Fly to be a gross-out, but in the way that disease corrupts the body and can make a loved one unrecognizable on every level. This is one of Cronenberg’s best films, and certainly one of the important movies of the 1980s. —Tom Keogh
Chris Walas, the effects whiz who turned Jeff Goldblum into the gooey, grotesque Brundle-Fly in David Cronenberg’s The Fly makes his directorial debut in this equally icky sequel. Eric Stoltz is Brundle’s genetically diseased offspring, a boy genius brought up in an experimental laboratory by a nefarious foster father eager to see what his inevitable metamorphosis will bring. No surprise here: like father, like son. Daphne Zuniga is his sweet young girlfriend, and John Getz reprises his role from the first film as a bitter alcoholic with a very bad fake…