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Rabid. David Cronenberg. 1977.

Let’s do another Cronenberg! The Pakistani mangoes are in season and are so delicious so I made a batida de mango.

Uhm oh… I thought I had seen all Cronenberg films before, but perhaps I haven’t seen this one? I mean, there’s a lot of actors returning from Cronenberg’s previous movie, Shivers, so they all look familiar…

Yes indeed, this is a Cronenberg film. It’s his second commercially released movie, and it’s got all the Cronenberg tics, down to women undergoing radical experimental (and insane) operations.

It’s a strange movie. I mean, just the mechanics of the main vector of spreading the disease: There’s a woman that presses her… arm pits? to people’s bodies and her skin graft bites them. It’s not quite as scenic as vampires are. But I guess it’s a quite Cronenberg move: Arm pits are probably horrifying things for him?

It’s just very, very boring. It’s got the Cronenberg touches (EWW THE BODY), but there’s no tension and there’s nothing interesting going on and the actors are all pretty unremarkable and the cinematography is anything special at all.

I wonder whether George Romero was inspired by these movies for his next two Dead movies: Day of the Dead (I think) have some scenes that are very reminiscent of the tower block setup in Shivers, and Dawn of the Dead (if I remember correctly) has scenes that are very much like this movie. The main difference is that Cronenberg assumes that a sane, well-functioning government can exist, while Romero assumes that that’s impossible.

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