The Brood/Review

From The Grindhouse Cinema Database

< The Brood

An interesting blend of the classic creature feature with a paranoid social satire, The Brood shrewdly hides a lingering fear of psychological medicine beneath an eerie and disturbingly violent monster movie. What makes it stand apart is that it works so well on both accounts.

Fearing for the safety of his young daughter, Frank Carveth tries to keep her from visiting her disturbed mother, Nola, who just so happens to be a current resident at the Somafree Institute of Psychoplasmics.


Led by Dr. Hal Raglan (played to the gills by the great Oliver Reed), patients at Somafree let their rage out through bizarre role-playing and intense emotional exercises. Unlike her peers, Nola's inner rage is not only coming to the surface verbally, but through procreation, spawning inhuman dwarves that act out the desires of her subconscious mind and kill those who tamper with her "healing process."

Much like the sci-fi classic Forbidden Planet, The Brood depicts the harm that can be caused by the unfettered human "id," and poses interesting questions concerning psychiatry and its effect on the mass consciousness.

Although this feature is quite early in director David Cronenberg's career, it keenly depicts his usual fascinations (physical deformity, mind overcoming the body or vice versa, the family unit) and takes what on paper looks like a sordid little tale and transforms it into intelligent, socially pertinent art.

Review by Mdeapo

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