The Fly (1958)

Produced & Directed by: Kurt Neumann

Written by: James Clavell

Story by:
George Langelaan


David Hedison .... Andre Delambre
Patricia Owens .... Helene Delambre
Vincent Price .... François Delambre
Herbert Marshall .... Insp. Charas
Kathleen Freeman .... Emma
James Canning .... Dick Baxter
Betty Lou Gerson .... Nurse Andersone
Charles Herbert .... Philippe Delambre

Release Date: Theatrical: July 16, 1958




A housewife named Helene Delambre (Patricia Owens) is framed for murder on her husband Andre (David Hedison) by the press of her plant to press his head and left hand after a horrible incident and is cautious on anyone killing a house fly in her house as she tells her bother in law Francois (Vincent Price) and Inspector Charas (Herbert Marshall) as to why she killed her husband and her strange behavior.
Andre is a scientist and invented a matter transportation apparatus, and while experimenting with himself, a fly entered the chamber, exchanging one hand and the head with him after the transference.
This fly isn't an ordinary fly as her son Philippe (Charles Herbert) caught it and showed it to her telling her that it had a white head unlike the rest and she told him to let it be free which was the cause of the whole mess as Andre is partly transformed into a giant fly with his head and one arm changed and can't seem to talk anymore and is sending messages. His life was miserable that he didn't want to live the rest of his life like that plus he can't seem to control himself.


We spot some serious conversations between François and Helene Delambre by being questioned by Insp. Charas on a homicide. It seemed to come well together with a good serious attitude on all of the performances that were coached for this scene.
There's a nice moment with a nurse serving breakfast to Helene in bed and then a fly zooms around with a good shot on her looking at the fly and focusing where it's going. There's a perfect inentse moment with her screaming at the nurse and going into a rage when she tries to kill it which is a nice touch to the story making you wonder why she's acting like this.
There's a good discussion at a dinner table between
François and Philippe Delambre as uncle and nephew discussion about his Mom and about a fly he saw outside that's different than the others with good close up shots on each of them when they have a discussion.
There's a good moment between Helene with
Andre Delambre showing her his creation with many good shots on the machinery coming to life when he shows how her saucer was transferred from one transporter to the next as well as them reading it showing the letters where the saucer was made written backwards.
There's a nice shot on
Andre when he turns around to see if his cat was sent to the next transporter with a good wide eyed shocked expression on his face which looked perfect.
There's a good scene between
Philippe telling Helene on a certain fly he caught which looked impressive and leaving a nice feeling that something nightmarish was going to happen.
There's some good scene's with Helene trying to talk to Andre with him hiding his face in a cape and later on exposing his arm which was a fly's claw.
There's some good tense moments with Helene,
Philippe and a maid trying to catch a fly in their house with many good close up shots on the fly as their reactions were very well done.
There's a good gross out scene with Helene giving Andre a meal and him gorging out on it. Then there's a great encouraging moment with her towards him to try and transport himself again as there's a good energetic moment on this.
There's a good shot on Helene removing Andre's blanket from his head with a great close up shot on him having a face of a fly and a nice close up shot on her screaming in terror as well as a nice 3D shot on her screaming, then backing away as well as passing out which showed some nice timing.
Then there's many great shots on Andre smashing his creation and destroying his papers.
There's a good shot on Helene helping Andre crush the parts of him as a fly as well as her screaming in terror with the machine crushing him to death and her crying.
There's a good impressive moment with
Philippe telling François about the white headed fly he saw on a spider web with him getting anxious and then insisting Insp. Charas to come outside and see it.
There's a good camera shot looking up on
François and Insp. Charas looking at the spider web in shock as well as a nice shot on Andre looking in terror being caught in the web with the spider coming right at him.
Bottom line is that this film was considered a horror classic and one of the original giant insect horror films. So my question is. How come I don't agree with it? I found it very slow, boring and I almost fell asleep to watching it.
There were some good performances and the direction wasn't too bad which I credit this film from not bombing. Also, there's a great scene on the main character revealing himself as a fly which looked cheesy now but back then I can see why it would look creepy. There's also nice machine types of effects that involved the two transporters too which was interesting to watch. Close to the ending of the film was just so weird and bizarre which was memorable to anyone who has seen this film. This was one of those classic drive in movies and I am very interested in those types but not this one I'm afraid.
Over two decades later a remake was made directed by David Cronenberg but the story was completely different and the only thing that these two film's had in common was the two transporters. But a remake should be that way than to see a repeated story again in which we see nowadays since Hollywood is running out of ideas. This one was followed by a sequel titled Return of the Fly so we have to watch this clunker again.

The acting is descent for it's time as we have a good performance by David Hedison (Andre Delambre) as a playboy type of character in the film acting full of life and really bringing out his character to the screen. He also does well by acting disturbed and menacing after slowly turning into a fly showing a nice versatality to his role in the film.
Patricia Owens (Helene Delambre) was probably the best out of the whole cast in which she does a fine job by acting overly paranoid, intense and disturbed after the whole incident during the beginning of the film and acting calm and easygoing when the story is told. Also she does well screaming when she spots someone suddenly ooking like an insect. She brought otu alot of great energy to her part in the film.
Vincent Price
(François Delambre) didn't play a maniac or criminal in this one and instead played a descent everyday nice guy which was a nice change and can do an okay job while doing so even if he still sounds creepy when he talks in the flick.
Herbert Marshall
(Insp. Charas) brought a great seriousness to his part in the film as an inspector acting almost emotionless to what he had to portray and being very well focused too. He didn't seem to have a lacking moment with his character at all.
Charles Herbert
(Philippe Delambre) was a nice drawing card to the film as a nice charming young boy in the film fascinated in insects. You can tell he really tried hard by portraying this role and played the perfect typical little kid who's curious about stuff.

There's terrific old classical music with the odd weeping violin music for the upsetting moments as well as the strong trumpet playing for the adventureous and suspenseful scene's too all done by Paul Sawtell.

Andre Delambre: [about the cat killed by the transporter] She disintegrated perfectly, but never reappeared.
Helene Delambre: Where's she gone?
Andre Delambre: Into space... a stream of cat atoms...
Andre Delambre: It'd be funny if life weren't so sacred.

Andre Delambre: Help me! Help meeee!

François Delambre: You've commited murder just as much as Helene did. You killed a fly with a human head. She killed a human with a fly head.

François Delambre: No, Helene and Andre believed in the sacredness of life. They wouldn't harm anything...not even a fly.

Police doctor: I shall never forget that scream as long as I live...