Videodrome - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Videodrome Reviews

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November 22, 2016
This is a really fun, often icky body horror film with some really interesting ideas and great practical effects. I liked how Cronenberg went from a structurally conventional sci-fi horror film (Scanners) to an unconventional, provocative, and totally original body horror movie. I liked the ideas discussed in the film, I liked how unique and different it was from any horror film I've ever seen, and even when the violence got splattery, it didn't take me out of the film. It's not for everybody, but the fans of Cronenberg would cherish this audacious piece of work. I liked it a lot!
½ October 24, 2016
Very original flick, crazy how this is from 1983 and yet still seems relative today. Woods and Harry have really strong showings. Long live the new flesh.
October 15, 2016
Great Art and Social Commentary withstands the test of time. Long Live the New Flesh!
September 13, 2016
It has more than a fair share of exploitation, but thats the very idea this unnerving techno-reality mystery seeks to explore.
½ September 8, 2016
(1.5 stars)
Definitely one of the weirdest films ever been created. A man watches a videotape. Man goes crazy. Any proper attempt on my part to explain the premise would be futile. Possibly hidden behind the surreal, complex and down-right bizarre are insightful comments on television brainwashing. 'Videodrome' also acts as further proof that practical effects remains genuinely scarier than computer technology. Therefore to say it was a bad film due to my lack of understanding would be short-sighted; nevertheless, the level of confusion I experienced undeniably had a severe impact on its entertainment value.
August 16, 2016
David Cronenberg's "Videodrome" is great! It mixes body horror with crazy tech stuff and surrealism, and the mixture is really entertaining and weird. Cronenberg nows how to use special effects that are creepy and strange, and he isn't afraid to just had flat out weird ideas. Highly recommend this crazy movie from the 80s, it is both weird and horrifying and fun.
½ July 2, 2016
Saw this on 2/7/16
Videodrome starts well, it could have been many things: a social allegory or a potent observation of violence in society, but instead David Crorenberg had to go way up into his asshole with the totally unnecessary body horror cliches. Drome feels like the most senseless body horror film from Crorenberg.
June 27, 2016
Such a stupid movie!!! What a waist of time!
Film C.
Super Reviewer
June 26, 2016
I love the practical FX, I still don't know how David Cronenberg made it but I have to say, good acting, best animation sequences.
June 21, 2016
Well. Looks like I'm not into kinky torture sex.

Case closed.

Some random notes I took until half way through:
Rick Baker!
Gnarly detail
Sleazy shows
Something tough and will breakthrough
Stimulation for our own sake
The retina of the mind's eye
Torture AND porn!
James woods knows love making
Nikki is into some kinky s
½ June 6, 2016
Videodrome is such a disappointing movie with a solid first half and such a terrific and original premise, but the execution is awful with too much gory and plain repulsive sequences, unlikable characters and an unfortunate emphasis on gore instead of good storytelling. It had a great potential, but it was wasted with those poor choices and it ended up being a very frustrating movie.
Super Reviewer
½ June 3, 2016
"I don't get it..."
"Don't worry about it."

"So it's been a hallucination since the beginning?"
"Don't worry about it."

"I'm totally lost, can you explain it?"
"Don't worry about it."
June 3, 2016
One of Cronenberg's best hands down. A film with many layers and a brilliant social commentary on technology and desensitization. Decades ahead of it's time and one movie I never get sick of watching.
½ May 13, 2016
This movie is f**ked up but quite mesmerizing.
May 12, 2016
This is a transitional film for Cronenberg. It's the last film he made that bears the marks of his early style, and it points to the direction he will eventually (but not immediately) go in. While I have great admiration for the ambition it displays, it doesn't completely succeed for me, and is one of my least favorite of his early films. Only "Scanners" really works even less for me. What he's doing here is very similar to what he does later in a film like "Naked Lunch", or even "Spider" I guess, where an unreliable narrator affects the film in ways that makes everything depicted questionable. My issue with "Videodrome" is that the reality of the film breaks down to the point that I don't think anyone can really say what's really happening in the last 20-40 minutes of the film. Is that a serious problem? No, and I still think it's a remarkable film, but I think Cronenberg demonstrates less control over this film and it's subject matter than he does over earlier and subsequent films.
½ April 28, 2016
I've noticed that during the late 70's and early 80's, Cronenberg directed and wrote a bunch of horror cult films, but this one really brings us to a whole new level of weirdness. It's a completly strange and pretty though-provocing movie, but it's good. The acting is good and the special effects are just so campy and classic and there's some nice blood effects in there too. And James Wood is perfect for the role. Recommended !!
April 15, 2016
Long live the new flesh...
April 10, 2016
First of all, I may be a little bias when writing this, as this is one of my favorite films OF ALL TIME.
If I had to describe Videodrome, I'd say it was a cryptic, surrealistic nightmare based in biotechnology, social commentary (which is actually more relevant now!), and oh so much psychosexuality. The movie is stacked full with bizarre sequences and conversations, and even though you might not get it at first, you can't help but be entertained by the sheer weirdness of it all. Despite the crazy practical effects and gruesome images, Videodrome has alot to offer in the way of story and message. It warns of possible violation of our own individuality and perception of the world through the media we consume and its format. It also brings up really interesting philosophical ideas on how we see reality and what defines the phrase "real life".
From the first viewing, the imagery will stick with you and make you want to watch it again, in which case the story and ideas will start to soak in more completely and soon you'll find yourself assimilated into the collective of fans of Videodrome...or at least that was my situation.

April 3, 2016
It would be interesting to see if Cronenberg were to remake Videodrome set in the present day, how different it would be.The central theme of our interaction with media (or maybe medias interaction with us) translates differently in 2016.

Something just felt a bit off throughout the movie, and I don't think it was intentional. The way that the hallucinations came and went felt very unnatural and not so much in a disorienting way, but more of an issue with how the movie was edited...
March 3, 2016
The films of David Cronenberg - at least the ones billed as products of the "body horror" subgenre - always achieve a certain sort of impressive unpleasantness. Never are they necessarily scary, explosive, or even blackly funny. They stew in a concoction of emotionless carnage and metallic surrealism more ominous and disturbing than directly intense. We sit as an uncomfortable, sullen witness, prone to wincing as there isn't much else to do. It's eerie without the eventual emotional crescendo we might expect in a typical horror closer; it doesn't feel like a horror film so much as it does an inexplicable nightmare you'd rather forget than dwell on.
And so I give props to Cronenberg for making a fright-fest incomparable to his peers, but that doesn't mean I necessarily like "Videodrome." It's too abstractly unpleasant for me to arrantly recommend it, since most will likely have a similar reaction. But it does what it sets out to do quite smashingly, which is to devise a television satire more reflective of a macabre tale of terror than, to be outrageously broad, "Network." Whether you venerate it all or not is up to fate, and I just so happen to be one of the few who feels the need to take a hot shower and watch a couple hours worth of '90s sitcoms after viewing, just to get the unshakable feeling of abhorrence off me.
It stars James Woods as Max Renn, a TV producer who runs CIVIC-TV, an underground Canadian station that specializes in the spotlighting of softcore pornography and brutal depictions of staged violence. Well-aware of audience fascination regarding such horrors, Renn is conscious that his consumers are on the brink of tiring of the same old standardized faux taboos. So his world lights up when he accidentally discovers "Videodrome," a plotless television program from Asia that looks and feels like snuff, torture and murder its most prevalent features. It must be phony, Renn tells himself, but in the context of a David Cronenberg film, we know that this mostly likely isn't the case. But Renn, being too optimistic in a profession that should be cutthroat, foresees the program as being the future of frowzy television.
Before making the final decision as to whether he should air the program or not, though, Renn makes the regrettable mistake of becoming addicted to the series, which ends up being much more sinister than he might have at first believed. As it turns out, the feed is coming from a mysterious location in Pittsburgh, and has, similarly to the supernatural tape in "Ringu," dramatic physical and mental impact on the viewer. Shortly after his introduction to "Videodrome," Renn begins having bizarre hallucinations, ranging from images of his TV coming to life to his stomach disfiguring into something reminiscent of a VCR. Things only grow more grotesque the more Renn delves into the situation.
"Videodrome's" plot thickens as it wears on, covering the devastations of governmental conspiracy, media dependency, and forthrightly strange malice, and their blending together leaves us distinctly uneasy. Never frightened, but aflutter, a feeling of all-powerful danger following our every move, unable to be stopped. Enigma is key to the fears of the film, and the more erratic it gets, the more violent it gets, the more tremulous we become. It isn't hair-raising in varying bursts akin to "Halloween" or "Suspiria"; "Videodrome" has an incessant rumbling of disquiet lingering throughout every scene.
But I hesitate to say that I felt anything but disgust during the entirety of "Videodrome." Watching it again sounds about as appealing as only eating undercooked meat for a week, and I wouldn't want to inflict such pain onto myself or my readers. My experiences with Cronenberg have been nothing less than uneven over the years; I love his spectacularly screwy "eXistentZ," like his take on the gangster movie, "Eastern Promises," and actively loathe his widely praised "Dead Ringers." For once, "Videodrome" carries the feeling of indifference that I so desperately try to avoid when watching movies. I hold it in high regard, its craftsmanship, performances, and imagery intriguingly unwonted. But when reflecting upon a movie, one question always stands out as being most potent: did I like it? No. But there's a lot to admire.
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