Day #167: The Brood (1979)

Synopsis:

[From IMDb:] A man tries to uncover an unconventional psychologist’s therapy techniques on his institutionalized wife, while a series of brutal attacks committed by a brood of mutant children coincides with the husband’s investigation.

My take:

Writing unfavourable reviews about classic horror movies always makes me feel slightly nervous. After all, they’re classics! They’ve withstood the test of time – in some cases, more time than I’ve been alive. There’s got to be a reason for that, right?

That being said, I’m sorry to report that The Brood was just super boring for me.

If more of the movie had focused on Samantha Eggar chewing up the scenery with her amazing performance as Nola, things might have been different. Hell, if the movie had focused more on practically anyone but Art Hindle, who brings shame to Peter Dinklage’s face with his underwhelming performance, the movie probably would have been infinitely more engaging.

Joffrey's Name Day. A joust fight is in progress. Tyrion returns from battle . Intrp Ser Dontos.

chromo10 So similar!

 

Oliver Reed, Henry Beckman, Gary McKeehan, Robert Silverman – all of them were great, even with some occasionally awkward material to work with. Yet none of them got near as much screen time as the horribly dull Frank.

Frank can’t take all of the blame though, because even if you ignore him for a moment there’s still something missing from The Brood, which is highlighted by the last 15 minutes or so of the movie. In this short period of time there’s a real sense of suspense, and horror that’s completely lacking from the preceding 75 minutes. It’s as if only through sheer force of will is Samantha Eggar – with the help of some pretty gross looking special effects – able to drag the movie’s energy up to the required levels. And while this may make for a suitably dramatic finale, it hardly makes up for what you have to get through to get to this point.

All in all, while I think that The Brood had a lot of potential to be a truly terrifying story, it seemed to have flashes of brilliance almost in spite of itself (by which I mean: thanks to Samantha Eggar). And this is why the knowledge that a remake is in the works doesn’t bother me all that much; because it could certainly be improved upon.

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