|The Brood Criterion Collection Cover Blu Ray|
The focus of the movie is on a psychiatrist and his patient. He is working with a technique that is known as psychoplasmics, which is supposed to let go of problems within the body, and then manifests it outside in other arenas. There are physiological changes to the patient, and through focusing and redirection of the energy, the sickness leaves and manifests in another benign area of the body. However, things get weird when the psychiatrist gets a visit from a patient’s husband, embroiled in a custody battle, he wants to get sole custody of their child. However, the doctor wants to protect the best interest of his patient, so he creates an intense plasmic environment, which ends up causing serious issue.
The plot thickens when small alien children start attacking people around the ex-husband’s world, including a grandmother, and others. As there becomes an investigation, it turns out a dark secret is being held within the compound of the psychiatrist, which turns out to be quite sickening. You see, the patient in question is giving birth to alien children based on her psychotic episodes, and Cronenberg shows you a cycle of birth that is equal parts grotesque, horrific, and gore filled. You have to see it to believe it, as it’s 1979 yet the practical effects are far beyond what you’d expect for the time.
The movie breaks a major taboo towards the end, and that’s the killing of children. You never see that, but in this movie, “The Brood” are not just children, they are alien children, and they will murder at all costs.
The movie is incredible. It has a slow pace, but quickens in the end, so if you aren’t a fan of slow burns, you may miss out. It takes time to build, but when you finally see the villainous brood, you cheer for the main characters and hope for something grand in the end. It has a lot of elements that are going to shock and awe, but only if you invest in the movie long enough to see the end. I can see some people getting bored with this, even though the Howard Shore music keeps you entertained. This is very much a subdued, psychological horror masterpiece, with a nod to science fiction as well. However, it’s slow pacing is going to cause some to turn it off, while others will be grossed out by the birthing cycle that is evidenced in the third act reveal.
If you’re a fan of David Cronenberg, you’re going to love this one. It’s got every trait that you’d expect, and it’s well put together. I highly recommend checking it out, especially for the special effects that are evidenced towards the end of the movie.