5 Jun

I’m excited to try my hand at writing a review on a current movie. It is 9am on a Saturday and I am still not fully adjusted to the sunlight beaming through my glass door, but I just wanted to get this out there for my readers before I launched into the rest of my day. (By launch I mean launch myself from my couch to a deck chair and sip a Brooklyn Summer Ale).

I think I will stick with the standard four star system for my reviews. So here goes!

SPLICE (2010) : ** 1/2 out of 4 stars

Vincenzo Natali makes his first highly publicized film after having a cult following since his 1997 indie horror film, “Cube” (in which he plays out his sick mathematical dream scenario of what should happen to English majors who snicker and compare him to literary characters he has never heard of). He makes a stylish effort with “Splice” to make a  head smart movie that delves into some seriously disturbing sides of human nature.

Essentially, “Splice” is about two mad scientists who are madly in love (oh that was terrible) and are on the brink of one of the greatest scientific discoveries of their time, splicing the DNA of multiple animals with human DNA to form a compound that could cure many diseases including some forms of  cancer. When their project doesn’t receive the go ahead because of the moral implications, they decided to do the un-smart thing and do the project in secret. What they came up with was what looked like splicing the genes from Britney Spears (post-headshave), Gene Simmons to copy his tongue, Susan Sarandon to get her legs, and James Cameron to get the devil’s tail. In reality, it was multiple animals (they only flashed it across the screen once, but the combination of animals is not important) and an anonymous human donor.

The result is the creature, Dren, who takes on predominantly human features, including brain development. She also has a tail with a poisonous pincer. The two mad scientists grow attached to this creature, in more disturbing ways than one and while the creature continues to evolve, the two main characters seem to devolve back to the equivalent of those rednecks in “Deliverance.”

The movie, for the most part, accomplishes what it sets out to do; be a more sophisticated horror movie driven by strong performances from lead actors (primarily Adrien Brody who still looks like he is under contract with the movie “The Pianist” to stay below a healthy weight). What the movie fails to do is be as smart as it thinks it is. While the characters themselves say they have crossed the moral line of right and wrong, they seem to just give a nod to the moral issues at hand instead of fleshing them out entirely and making the film complete.

When this movie is disturbing, it is truly disturbing. There are images from the movie that will stick inside my brain for a while. Also, there is a line at the end of the movie (which I don’t want to ruin) that is on the equivalent to when the zombies first say “Braaaains.” Overall, an ambitious film that could be great if there are some added scenes in the director’s cut DVD.



  1. Jeremy Petersen June 5, 2010 at 1:50 pm #

    Thanks, Chris–after you’re review, I’ve probably lost whatever ammunition I had to get Julie to see that movie with me. Given what most of the RT reviews–even the positive ones–have said (do you find that reading the RT reviews influences your thinking), your analysis is probably pretty accurate. Looks like I’ll have to wait for the DVD on this one.

    Props on breaking out the Summer Ale before 10 AM! Great summer beverage.
    Are you planning on watching Get Him to the Greek this weekend as well?

    • Chris Petersen June 5, 2010 at 2:04 pm #

      Jerome, as an english professor, I would expect you to know the difference between “your” and “you’re.” I mean, I’m not perfect, but come on.

  2. Jeremy Petersen June 5, 2010 at 5:19 pm #

    Ouch. I think I even went back and changed it–I have no idea why that looked right to me.

  3. Mal Soller June 7, 2010 at 6:34 pm #

    Good stuff man… Saved 2 hours of my life, and with your stellar breakdown of the plot highs and lows, don’t feel I’m missing out if I wait to see this one on DVD or the movie channels… Hope all is well… I did the Corona before 10am thing today… SHORE DOOTS!

    • Chris Petersen June 7, 2010 at 8:40 pm #

      Nice, dude! Shore duty is the best. You need to get down here before the summer is over.


  1. Tweets that mention SPLICE! FIRST NEW FILM REVIEW!!! | Chris Petersen's Film Blog -- Topsy.com - June 5, 2010

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Chevaris Davis and Chris Petersen, Chris Petersen. Chris Petersen said: Splice!!! New film review! https://chrispetersen25.wordpress.com/2010/06/05/splice-first-new-film-review/ […]

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