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Wednesday, 18 August 2010

QUICK FIX: RABID (1977)

Rabid is one of my favourite films from David Cronenberg. This is down to it being so deliciously odd and unnerving, and also for the audacity of casting porn star Marilyn Chambers in the lead role. An injured woman (Chambers) receives a skin graft of modified flesh.

The flesh takes to her, and while it heals her she develops an opening under armpit, which contains a disturbingly phallic stinger, which enables her to feed on the blood of any victim she chooses, while wiping their memory of any encounter. The thing is, everyone she infects via this process becomes a rabid zombie creature, which then spreads the virus further. Bloody chaos ensues.

The film was made with a very low budget, but it was crafted very well, making the most of every penny. It's tense and rather sick, and the sight of the opening under the girl's armpit is grotesque.

Cronenberg is an expert with creating horror from mutations of the human body, and while not his best film by a long way, it is a very fine little gem that serious horror fans need in their collections. The macabre subject and surreal construction of the film makes for perfect late night viewing.

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