Gruesome and horribly discomforting, The Fly is a remake that pushes the boundaries of conventional horror film, and makes you squeamish all over, keeping you awake at night. It's not the dramatic effects that get to you, though they are reminiscent of the ones from An American Werewolf in London. No, much more sinister and repulsive is the transformation of a man into a fly, which also goes along with his own inner turmoil and assuredness. The protagonist is a scientist with a lucky streak and an amicable idea that would change the face of science. He's cocky, nearly vain, and finds a familiar soulmate with a journalist who writes down his every word behind his back (Davis). Their love story, though based on a symbiotic mess, is actually important to the plot of the film, as this relationship morphs into a co-dependent monster mash. Maybe co-dependent isn't the right word either, as it's more about obsession, needing someone when it's your eleventh hour, and the horror of science gone wrong. It was effective as a horror film rather than a sci-fi because of the subtext of human involvement. Immediately you put yourself in the shoes of the protagonist, and that is a fearsome position when you're not a direct observer, as if you're trapped in a nightmare. By the very end, the buildup becomes astounding; you're so attuned to the needs of the character that you can feel every hair sprout from his back as if it was on yours. None of this felt dated or a predecessor to Cronenberg's later work. That eerie touch that Cronenberg brings to his films reverberates here, his teasing tone at the character's suspenseful demise evident from the brash dialogue, the almost peppy way he starts evolving into something not quite human. The fact that the character changes his attitude before becoming the woefully named fly really brought out the danger of what was to come. The pacing was great, the acting from both leads was suspenseful, and the directing was pristine if not oddly gleeful. Really, a masterful film.