The Brood

I avoided the rain and went over to the office briefly. I didn’t finish my syllabus. I took the bus out to the Target store in Emeryville, where I bought a phone. I returned home to watch “Into the Woods” on Blu-ray. I liked it a bit more than when I saw it in the theatre a year ago, although I still couldn’t stand that false ending. My perception of James Corden has certainly changed in the past year. I went back to work. One of the women talked about the Powerball drawing as if she had a good chance of winning. I wasn’t pursuing that kind of money because my net worth is substantial already. When I returned home, I watched Sean Connery on the Johnny Carson show in 1983, promoting “Never Say Never Again.” I watched David Cronenberg’s “The Brood.” It was a decent movie which seemed like preparation for later work like “The Fly.” It does have those early trademarks, like weird science and body changes. Oliver Reed is the psychotherapist whose radical treatment is more extreme than we realize. Reed was a great actor in the days of “Oliver!” and “Women in Love,” and he is still pretty good here, although I wondered if he was bored during filming. Samantha Eggar was known for “Doctor Dolittle,” and “Brood” was an interesting addition to her resume. I couldn’t understand the reactions of the victims. They seem to be stupefied and stand still when they should be running. We see a woman standing around staring with two glasses in her hands. The brood consists of children who look like Teletubbies wearing strange makeup. In a classroom where the teacher is being attacked, only one of the children is sensible, running outside to get some help. The others just watch, making me feel that the children of 1979 were no better than the children of 2016. The little girl who was the daughter was a pretty good child actor, possibly because she didn’t say much, and she had a piercing scream that brought to mind Shelley Duvall in “The Shining.” The grandfather was truly stupid in going into the house alone when he was drunk. In horror movies, everyone is stupid. Everything in “The Brood” is leading to the climax. In hindsight, they should have given Samantha a sedative instead of talking to her, which would bring out her craziness and hostility. The revelation is kind of shocking, even when viewed today. The blood was nauseating, and what Samantha did made me shiver. David Cronenberg would go on to bigger and better films, but “The Brood” is a cult classic. It showed much more of what made Croenberg Cronenberg than a film like Maps to the Stars.” I think that if I’m ever in a Cronenberg mood, which should be rare, I would want to turn to “Scanners,” “Videodrome,” and “The Fly.” I appreciated the fact that the effects in “The Brood” were done without CGI. I like those old days of moviemaking. One of the special features on the DVD was an interview with Art Hindle and Cindy Hinds. I’m not sure that I want to know more about David Cronenberg. He is going to turn 73 on March 15. Some of the people who died on January 14 include Lewis Carroll (1898), Humphrey Bogart (1957), Barry Fitzgerald (1961), Jeanette MacDonald (1965), Peter Finch (1977), Donna Reed (1986), Shelley Winters (2006), Ricardo Montalban (2009), and Susannah York (2011). Today is a birthday for Carl Weathers (68) and Faye Dunaway (75). According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for January 14, Marilyn Monroe married Joe DiMaggio in 1954. In 1976, “The Bionic Woman” with Lindsay Wagner made its debut on ABC. In 1977, “Fantasy Island” with Ricardo Montalban made its debut on ABC.

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