Hello Geeks and Ghouls, Famous Monster here. Well, it’s finally October and you know what that means? Breast Cancer Awareness 5Ks? Good guess. Pumpkin Spice Lattes? Delicious, but no. Halloween? YES. Horror movies? DOUBLE YES!
Welcome to 31 Days of Horror, where I’ll cover at least two noteworthy horror films a day for the entirety of the month. That’s 31 Days of Horror and 62+ scary movies perfect for a cold, dark October night. Be sure to visit Geeks of Doom every day this month for a double-shot of chills and thrills!
Today’s double-shot of creepy-crawly horror features David Cronenberg‘s 1986 film, The Fly, and Chuck Russell‘s 1988 The Blob – both of which are remakes of 1958 drive-in classics.
Seth Brundle (Jeff Goldblum), a brilliant but eccentric scientist, is working on a project that will change the world: a set of “Telepods” that allows instantaneous teleportation of an object from one location to another.
Although the Telepods can transport inanimate objects, they do not work properly on living things, as is demonstrated when a live baboon is turned inside-out during an experiment. Seth successfully reprograms the Telepod computer to cope with living creatures, and teleports himself, unaware that a common housefly is in the pod with him – merging his DNA with the fly at a molecular-genetic level. Slowly, the brilliant scientist becomes a hybrid creature that is neither human nor insect, which Seth begins referring to as “Brundlefly.”
That Creepy Scene:
After using the Telepod, Seth begins to exhibit beneficial effects of the experiment such as increased strength, stamina, and sexual potency. Brundle soon realizes that something went horribly wrong during teleportation when his fingernails begin falling off.
Over the next few weeks, Brundle continues to deteriorate, losing various body parts and becoming progressively less human in appearance. He starts to exhibit fly-like characteristics, such as vomiting digestive enzymes onto his food in order to dissolve it…
Directed by David Cronenberg, The Fly features a tour de force performance by Jeff Goldblum and Academy Award-winning makeup (Gremlins, Raiders of the Lost Ark) designed and executed by Chris Walas.
The Fly is one of my all-time favorite films, and one of the greatest horror films ever (re)made. Dressed up as a science-fiction film with Cronenberg’s trademark creepy-crawly ‘body horror,’ The Fly is a tragic love story and an analogy for disease and terminal illnesses like cancer, and more specifically, the aging process.
Goldblum’s heartbreaking performance deserves to be put alongside Boris Karloff’s performance as Frankenstein’s Monster and Lon Chaney’s iconic role as The Phantom. With Geena Davis‘ memorable role as Goldblum’s love interest, Veronica Quaife, The Fly is as tragic a love story as Romeo and Juliet – a horrific, sci-fi version where Romeo vomits digestive enzymes on his food, but a love story nonetheless.
A meteorite crashes near the small town of Arborville, California. After exploring the crash site, an old homeless man discovers, within the meteorite, a jelly-like substance (the Blob) that attaches itself to his hand.
Three high school students, Brian Flagg (Kevin Dillon), Meg Penny (Shawnee Smith), and Paul Taylor (Donovan Leitch), encounter the man and take him to a hospital. The lower half of the homeless man begins to liquify from exposure to the mysterious outer space parasite. It oozes out of the hospital, consuming everything in its path – growing to gargantuan proportions.
1988’s The Blob was written by Russell and Frank Darabont (The Mist), who previously collaborated on 1987’s A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors – the best of the bunch, in my opinion. While it isn’t as iconic as Irvin S. Yeaworth Jr’s low-budget 1958 classic, starring Steve McQueen, Chuck Russell’s 1988 version features some memorable little performances from Jeffrey DeMunn (The Walking Dead), Candy Clark (American Graffiti), and Joe Seneca (A Time to Kill) and impressive (if dated) special effects.
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