The Return of the Fly

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The Return of the Fly

Post  BoG on Thu Mar 04, 2010 5:17 pm

Sequel to The Fly (58): it's in b&w unlike the color of the 1st one, but widescreen. It starts off at the funeral of the wife/widow of the ill-fated scientist of the previous film; she was more the main character in the first film. It's suggested, by her brother-in-law Francoise (Vincent Price), that death was a merciful thing for her by this point, as she lived with the nightmare of the first film's events. The son (Brett Halsey) demands to know the details of his father's mysterious death and Francoise relents, taking him to the father's old lab, long in disuse.  It doesn't take a great intellect to figure out that the son intends to continue his father's work - the ol' matter disintegration-reintegration device. The son has a phobia about flies, but that's not his main problem: his problem is that his assistant (David Frankham) is an unscrupulous criminal. Before long, there are detectives being reintegrated with guinea pigs and it's a foregone conclusion that the son will suffer a similar fate to his father's.
This sequel has less of the eerie scares and more simple shock effect and cumbersome (if typical) fifties monsters, notably another Fly/Man hybrid. The script is also cumbersome and clumsy: during their experiments, the scientists decide to try a delayed reintegration for a guinea pig; why this was important to them is unclear, but it facilitates most of the remaining plot. As happens in such low budget fare, the criminal is always confronted by others in some secluded place, so he can gain the upper hand with no one  else seeing or intruding. In addition, the villain (Frankham) turns out to be some kind of freaky sadist, not simply a criminal, and purposely causes the son to transport with a fly - I guess he really didn't like him. Finally, the head of the Fly-man is larger than the one in the first film; this may have something to do with a gigantism problem which the scientists encountered in this version (the first porting attempt with a guinea pig resulted in a very large guinea pig). The film has many of these throwaway scenes, most evident with its version of the little fly yelling "Help me! Help me!"  But, even more, the Fly-man kills a couple of men; sure, the victims are bad guys, but it's still murder, and he gets away with it because this time, the errant little fly with a man's head is found. BoG's Score: 6 out of 10
Fly Trivia: there was one more sequel in 1965, Curse of the Fly, but it had no Fly monsters, just other freakish teleportation problems;
Star Trek TOS actor alert: Frankham guest-starred in the episode Is There in Truth no Beauty?
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