Despite not being as good as, say, Videodrome, I wonder if I'll see a movie from Cronenberg that is as nasty as this one. Combing disturbing murders with some rather truly gross moments, this is a movie that covers rage in Croneberg's usual style of the mind-body horror that is his bread and butter. Sure also helps that this was his way of covering his rather messy divorce, which I'm sure didn't help make his art any happier or less misogynistic, although I'm not sure this movie really hates on women. Breaking up leads to people creating some rather bleak things, I suppose.
From the outset, the viewer discovers that Oliver Reed's arrogant psychologist is going beyond the limits of science in an attempt to "Cure" his patients of their problems. However, he has become obsessed primarily with the protagonist's wife, who has intense rage problems and is too quick to blame everyone and anyone for the way she is. Unfortunately in this case, that leads to the creation of freaky deformed monsters that emerge from her and become her very own "Children," therefore body mutation results.
But if you thought the body mutation in Videodrome or Scanners was beyond insane, what happens to the wife is something straight out of a demented nightmare. Not only is there a murder scene that manages to be rather starling for being something out of a low budget 70s horror movie, but also the movie's climax is enough to unsettle most jaded fans of the genre. Nasty doesn't even begin to cover what ends up happening, and I'm not even sure I really understand what transpires.
The fact remains though that in some ways Cronenberg is wary of science gone amok, or at least he may feel that some protective measures need to be put in place. The Brood isn't so much a movie about a woman's violent impulses that manifest in murderous mutant monsters (try saying that three times fast), but is rather a mediation upon the dangers of pushing something too far. In addition to existing as a way of cleansing the feelings of someone who went through all too common experience-divorce. 88