Sollowing the folder on the film adaptations of the writings of Lovecraft, and after the friendly but harmless The Haunted Palace released in 1963, we are making a leap of 20 years in the future and we are looking today on Re-Animator, a production of the 1985 directly inspired another monument Lovecraftien, Herbert West Intensivist. From a new having a deep relationship with the Frankenstein Mary Shelley, in either his obsessions or scientific questions, moral, Stuart Gordon tackles the question at the time remained without conclusive answers ; how to adapt Lovecraft. There has been a couple of attempts, overall, fairly poor, or from completely next to the words Lovecraftiens, between 1963 and 1985. Attempts of Daniel Haller , in particular, that was left completely overwhelmed by The Color Fallen from the Sky and The Abomination of Dunwich, adapted respectively in 1965 and 1970. But in the case of the Re-Animator, not a matter for the director to grant too much importance to the thoughts of the metaphysical of the new. Even more than Roger Corman, who yet had not made much of a case for the moral of the story, Stuart Gordon completely hijacks Lovecraft to make a movie surprising.
Remember : two weeks ago, we saw that Lovecraft was an author in atmosphere, and that atmosphere so special that he distills in his new was, without a doubt, one of the biggest challenges for a director. Well, forget all that ; Stuart Gordonis not interested. No, not him, he wants to make a new and terrifying scientific, a good big delirium, ultra-gore, the kitsch assumed and situations that are completely improbable. You thought Lovecraft was an author in the style reminiscent of Baudelaire or of Edgar Allan Poe ? The director turns it into a duplicate of Jean-Marie Bigard and punctuates his film sequences are mind-boggling retardation – the rape by a man without a head was the firmament. It was necessary to dare. And must admit that it takes a sacred walk in front of a movie absolutely enjoyable due to its hard-line position. In less than five minutes – the time to call five friends, take a pack of beer and a few pizzas – one quickly realizes that Stuart Gordon has no atmosphere, it has no history ; Herbert West, the genius that is ambiguous and frenzied of the novel, is here reduced to the stroke of the student arrogant, in the same way as the characters. Pretty comparable to the Evil Dead, the movie dares, and finally reached his goal : make people laugh richly from a story loosely based on Lovecraft. A few key passages from the news that are picked up by the director as a parody, and some small winks will please the admirers of the author ; Stuart Gordon is a film director’s smart, and if his happy delirium has nothing to do with the original story, at any time, the director demonstrates a respect for the author who is a pleasure to see. A respect that does not mean a loyalty to a narrative, but a respect that can be interpreted as a “I’m having fun as a kid making jokes about fat from an author that I love”. And this is one of the things that make the film work. This mockery respectful is seen melee in an impressive achievement for a first film. The master budget is quite ridiculous, $ 900,000, is palpable then that flow of sequences that, on paper, could belong to any of the z series.
The difference, and what makes Re-Animator a film today worship, it is the generosity mad with which Stuart Gordon delivers the “no matter what”. Away from him the idea of scratching the surface of the potential film of the original story, it attempts to show the addition of hose possible in a laughter fat. Adaptation, finally, very second degree, and sufficiently original to that you are interested in, and it turns out to be very well staged. This is not so much photography, sometimes too dull and pretty bland, but the way the director films his rant by taking a visual representation absolutely too-much ; in this sense, the last quarter of the film is absolutely brilliant. It also seems to me necessary to mention the music of Richard Band, sticking perfectly to the spirit of the film and remaining in the mind long after the viewing ; in the image of the adaptation, it is catchy, without subtlety of any kind, place the small references, including Psychosis, when necessary ; in short, it has nothing to do with the spirit of Lovecraft, but none the less a great success. Clever mix of influences all assumed and pushed to the extreme, the film by Stuart Gordon is a monument of absurdity not to be underestimated as the viewing is enjoyable. Lovecraft is really just an excuse to be this happy theatre gore is located in the contemporary era, that manages to be ridiculous and cartoonish in its scenario, while offering a staging careful not scrimping on the style effects and the litres of blood. Finally, hats off to the excellent direction of the actors, who compensate for a characterization of intentionally ultra-basic, and a thousand places in the creations of the american author. Jeffrey Combs plays an excellent Herbert West, and David Gale completely crazy and ends to convince us. This Re-Animator is a film that is particularly good, which is not among the Evil Dead, Braindead , or other genre films. Making the choice to relegate to the second plan adaptation, to take his side, lewd and hilarious, series B, fat and heavy, the film by Stuart Gordon , is a success and surprisingly well in excess of its different suites, which, in seeking to further the delirium, is not able to capture the generosity AND the respect of the author of which was proof to the director. Then of course, the choice of the movie in this folder may seem curious ; if, on paper, it is an adaptation, the truth is any other and we are confronted with an assemblage of messy items all more clumsy than the others, camouflaged under gallons of blood and guts. But, my god, this is delicious !
”Force is to admit that one takes a sacred walk in front of a movie absolutely enjoyable due to its hard-line position.”
Stuart Gordon is a good director, respectful of the original story, and plays like a crazy filming – in very beautiful way – a scenario that pushes the stupidity to an incredible level. Absolutely hilarious, Re-Animator also says a lot about the different possible interpretations of the writings of Lovecraft. Finally, it may be preferable to see a developer push the frenzy to the end, rather than delivering a version of “serious” but truncated and far from the richness of the original writings as was The Curse of Arkham. In the second part of the file, we will see what that book Stuart Gordon when he adapted faithfully Lovecraft with Dagon ! In the meantime, I’ll see you tomorrow for the review of a monument inspired indirectly from the american author, I have named The Lair of Madness, John Carpenter !
– LOVECRAFT : author presentation
– LOVECRAFT and the cinema : author is he, in essence, inadaptable ?
– LOVECRAFT and the cinema : The Curse Of Arkham
– LOVECRAFT and the cinema : Re-Animator
– LOVECRAFT and the cinema : The lair of madness
• Achievement :Stuart Gordon
• Screenplay : Dennis Paoli, William Norris and Stuart Gordon
• Main actors :Jeffrey Combs, Bruce Abbott, David Gale
• Country of origin :United States
• Released :1985
• Duration :1h26
• Distributor :Metropolitan FilmExport
• Synopsis :Herbert West, a medical student, arrives in the university Miskatonic in Arkham, Massachusetts, where he attended the lectures of professor Carl Hill on the physiognomy and functioning of the brain. Very quickly, the two men are opposed because the West claims to be able to defeat death. In the cellar transformed into a laboratory of Dan Cain, a fellow student, West develops a strange concoction that, according to him, would revive the dead. The cat Dan is brought back to life…