Saturday, 22 January 2011

Return of the Fly

Year: 1949
Director: Edward Bernds
Screenplay: Edward Bernds, based on the short story The Fly by George Langelaan
Starring: Vincent Price, Brett Halsey, David Frankham, John Sutton, Dan Seymour, Danielle De Metz
Running Time: 80 minutes
Genre: Horror, science-fiction, thriller

Summary Fifteen years after his father's tragic experiments in matter transmission, Philippe Delambre (Halsey) is determined to continue the work, despite the strenuous objections of his wealthy uncle, Francois Delambre (Price), who witnessed what happened to Philippe's father. Enlisting the help of his friend Alan Hines (Frankham), Philippe reconstructs the teleportation machine, and begins testing it. However, Hines has a dark secret, and will stop at nothing to steal the machine. Needless to say it's not long before history repeats itself.

Opinions: This movie is the first sequel to the 1958 film The Fly based on the short story by George Langelaan, in which a scientist experiments with matter transmission but accidentally goes through the process with a housefly and winds up with the head and arm of a fly. This film was obviously made on a much lower budget than it's predecessor and, unlike the first one, was not filmed in colour. The movie is too short to really get dull and has a couple of effective scenes, most notably a human/guinea-pig hybrid, but for much of it's time it is more like a corporate espionage film than a horror movie, with the fly-creature itself not showing up until well after the half way mark, and when it does come into the story it barely appears. The ending is rushed and kind of a let-down. On the acting side Vincent Price does well as the concerned uncle, but the rest of the cast don't really make an impression.
Fans of the first film might be interested in this one. Otherwise, it passes the time on a dull afternoon and that's pretty much all you can say. There was a third film in the series, Curse of the Fly (1965).
By the way, the 1986 David Cronenberg film The Fly is a remake of the 1958 film, but it's sequel, The Fly II (1989), is not a remake of Return of the Fly.

It's going to take more than a swatter and a can of Raid to sort this one out: David Frankham and Brett Halsey in Return of the Fly

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