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Monday, May 24, 2010

Scanners (1981) - David Cronenberg

The next movie that I bring you is Scanners from 1981. A cornerstone when it comes to the Body Horror genre. Directed by veteran film director David Cronenberg who is also responsible The Fly, The Brood, Videodrome, and more recently Eastern Promises. This movie hits all of his usual features. The story is fantastic and presented in the best way it could have been for it's time. You can definitely see this movie as being an inspiration for the horror directors that followed. Namely, Clive Barker.

Now you can't talk about Scanners without bringing up the gore. The blood spurting everywhere. The heads exploding! These are such detailed scenes, they're pretty gruesome. The most notable scene is the first 'head pop'. It's such a shocking and graphic scene and has been referenced in quite a number of other movies including Wayne's World, a personal favorite of mine.

Scanners are people who have a sort of telepathic power that can take hold of others and make them do what they want. Darryl Revok is a rogue Scanner who is considered, by a certain specialized government agency, to be a telepathic terrorist. The above act triggers the agency to hire another scanner, Cameron Vale. Vale goes on a journey to find Revok, the journey takes him into a world that he never realized existed.

This was an amazing piece of work from Cronenberg. What else would I expect from this directors prime. It was graphic and intense. The music was jarring and kept you on the edge of your seat the entire time. The story is interesting and the theme is very involved. It's a great movie that showcases what a great director could do with what he had. I suggest this to anyone looking to expand their horizons. Some people will argue this isn't horror. I don't really know what their talking about. Pretty terrifying stuff.

I'm thinking of a number...
  • The movie was inspired by a chapter of William S. Burroughs' book Naked Lunch
  • The exploding head effect was done with a fake head filled with dog food and red paint and then shot with a 12 gauge shotgun... cool huhh
The money shot.

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