The Fly (1986)


“There was an old lady who swallowed a fly, perhaps she’ll die.” – Seth

Number of Times Seen – 1 (26 Aug 2018)

Brief Synopsis – A young scientist trying to find a solution for teleportation tests his invention on himself which causes dire side effects.

My Take on it – As a non fan of the horror genre, I try and stay away from films like this as a rule, but a friend recently convinced me that I should try this one out, so I did.

The premise is actually a great one because it is all about a scientist trying to prove his theory any way he can.

Jeff Goldblum is always great in the weird scientist role and has proved it over and over during his career and this film fits right into that category too.

The first half of this film works extremely well and gives us a very interesting idea and runs with it, but once things turn into a horror film / monster movie, those great ideas get lost along the way and things go downhill from there.

The special effects are quite good here and the transformation that occurs slowly throughout the film seems quite realistic as it helps us try and understand the way everything is happening to him.

Bottom Line – A bit too much for me because of the horror aspects, but the overall premise still works. Goldblum is always great in the scientist role and this film proves it once again. The first half of the film is much better and more interesting than the second half and gives us an intriguing premise but once things turn to the horror genre, the fascinating story gets lost in the race to turn things into a pseudo monster flick.  Great special effects help show the transformation of the main character throughout the film as we try and get a better understanding of what is happening to him.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – After watching some of his early films, director Martin Scorsese asked to meet David Cronenberg. Upon meeting him, Scorsese said he looked like a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon. This inspired Cronenberg to give himself a cameo as a doctor. (From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)

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6 thoughts on “The Fly (1986)

  1. One of the rare instances where the remake vastly improves on the original… not difficult to do in this case as the original – with a very clever idea – was a low budget, kind of cheesy horror film typical of those made in the 50s. This one really stepped up its game. Jeff Goldblum has never been better as the risk-taking and tortured scientist (and probably helped that his love interest was compellingly played by then wife Geena Davis). I disagree that the first half and second half don’t mesh – as I thought the storyline was all of a piece. I understand that “horror” is not your cup of tea Rob, so in that aspect, it may have failed a bit for you post DNA mix – but for me, it all worked – as I always saw this as a Frankenstein story – with the scientist using himself as the guinea pig and transforming himself into the Frankenstein monster. Once he began to lose control, for me – the arm-wrestling match – there was no coming back for the character. And what worked for me – and the subtle redemption for him – was his waning ability to understand was morphing into – to know that he was powerless to stop or reverse it – and to ultimately try to do the right thing – which meant to destroy that which he had become.

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  2. I know horror isn’t your cup of tea, but I’d love to read your take on some older classics such as Dead of Night (1945), The Uninvited (1944), and The Haunting (1963). All deliver some nice frights on a few fronts.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1986 |

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