The Fly (1958)
It is a truth universally acknowledged that the event horizon of genre earnestness creeps ever closer; sincere movies even 10 or 15 years old seem goofy and campy now. But some reviewers of The Fly in 1958 were already calling it ludicrous, unconvincing. Of course they don’t have the advantage of hindsight. The Fly was shot in only 18 days, using practical effects that were experimental and, in many cases, improvisatory. It turned Vincent Price from a fairly tedious background heavy to an icon of horror. Its quotes and imagery are fixed forever in the popular imagination. But besides all of that it’s actually a pretty messed-up spin on the Frankenstein formula: a homegrown researcher experimenting with the fringes of science in an attempt to defy natural law ends up victim of his own creation. Sure, a stitched-together and shambling corpse is maybe a little more viscerally frightening than a fly with a human head stuck onto it (and vice versa), but the danger of humans meddling with uncontrollable powers remains an evergreen idea.
1958 / Not Rated / 1h 34m / Sci-Fi
Tickets for “A Nightmare on Franklin Street” classic films are $10 for general admission and $7 for Tampa Theatre Members, available at the box office, located at 711 N. Franklin Street in downtown Tampa, or online at TampaTheatre.org (service fees apply).