The Man with the Screaming Brain
--reviewed by Patrick
Plotline: As I write this, I am sure my co-blogger-in-horror is writhing in jealousy over in her cube graveyard. To that, I say "yah!"
Anyways, the movie tells the tale of one WIlliam Cole, a pharmaceutical tycoon who travels with his wife to Bulgaria. There, they meet up with Yegor (cab driver and former KGB agent) and Tatoya (a gypsy who kills every man who rejects her manicial advances for marriage). Unfortunately, both Mr. Cole and Yegor have rejected Tatoya at one time or another, so they are both off'ed. Then, Mrs. Cole is killed as well (seeking revenge for her husband's death). Lucky for them, a nearby scientist, Dr. Ivon, has devised a way to merge parts of one body to another, without rejection from the host organism. He scoops up all of their bodies and pretty soon Mr. Cole and Yegor are sharing one body (Mr. Cole's) and Mrs. Cole is in the body of a robot. As always happens, craziness ensues as they all hunt down the evil Tatoya to revenge their deaths.
Scariness Factor: Though there's lot of blood going on, nothing in this movie is scary, nor is it meant to be. It's all completely lighthearted (it could easily be classified as a comedy, as well as a horror.) So, no frights here.
Originality: Though much of the physical comedy in this movie (and there's alot as the two personality halves (Mr. Cole and Yegor) fight for control of his body) could be easily traced back to Steve Martin's classic 'All of Me', I found the rest of the movie, with it's screwball twists and intentional B-Movie weirdness (ex. the robot is named P-Money), to be about as original as it gets.
High Points: Bruce Campbell. He wrote, directed and stars in this movie. As such, it's completely made for the type of role he does well:
cocky schmucks. There's lots of physical comedy and lots of one-liners.
This movie is basically made for his fans to revel in watching him do what he does best. Ted Raimi (brother of famed director Sam Raimi) is also in this, as the scientist's assistant Pavel, and manages to take over every scene he's in with lots of contortionist facial expressions. He seems to be having a ball in every scene and it carries over into the viewer's enjoyment of the scenes he's in.
Complaints: Bruce Campbell. Let's face it, if you don't like Bruce Campbell, this movie isn't going to change your mind. He doesn't try new things or try to expand his acting chops. He does the same sort of role he plays in every other movie he's in. So, if you don't like that to begin with, I urge you to avoid this movie.
Overall: An immensely fun movie which blows through a few hours briskly and enjoyable. It's not going to leave you thinking about what you just saw or change your view on life, but it's a great popcorn flick for the B-Movie crowd. Recommended.
**Sidenote: Lauren speaking, and I AM in fact writhing in jealousy as we speak.
Labels: A movies