So, I saw Splice the other night. And to be honest, it’s hard to say what I think of it. But “WTF?” is pretty accurate.
We all knew how weird this would be, just look at the trailer one more time. For the most part, I was blown away by this small private world that Director Vincenzo Natali had created for Splice. It almost played out as a broadway performance, but with Guillermo Del Toro-inspired creatures instead of dancing cats (Sorry Cats, “Memory” just is too annoying for my human ears). Adrien Brody and Sarah Polley (who?) bounced each other so well, nothing else really mattered until Dren comes along.
This movie reminds me a lot of the trailer for the movie Brothers. Not for the plot or the intensity but just for the deception it creates. Watch this trailer one more time:
Aside from that voice-over making the trailer seem like a fake-trailer for Grindhouse, it sets up the audience for an intense drama about lust and betrayal. But the movie is so different from the trailer, it almost didn’t seem like the same product being advertised. Same name, same look, but a completely different handle. Without saying much more, the Brothers trailer explains a lot of how Splice carries itself: With intense mystery.
And this is something I’m a-okay with: Selling an audience a sandwich but not saying what brand of meat it is. Weird metaphor, but we’ll move on. Splice isn’t a horror movie about mixing human and animal DNA. It’s a movie about how two people handle said situation. Sounds a bit boring in comparison, but the suspense is absurd. Splice has been getting incredible feedback from critics given the circumstances of it being a movie picked up by Dark Castle Entertainment and Warner Bros. after it generated immense buzz at Sundance Film Festival. And it’s well deserved.
But getting back to my original idea, the movie has a very weird premise. Never unbelievable, just weird. And it’s very easy to get past the first half of the movie and even it’s 3rd quarter isn’t too absurd. The true oddity (and my only real complaint of the movie) is the complete 360 turn Vincenzo makes in the final act. It has to literally be the last 5 minutes of the film where I literally grabbed my head and panicked. The turn it takes isn’t a twist more than just a complete plot change. Maybe I should sit on this for a little longer before I start screaming “Orpan“, but I’m just speaking my thought process since watching the movie. It breaks boundaries. A lot of them. But sitting through the intensity, the uncomfortable moments and all of the beautifully shot action scenes all proves worth while. Because Splice may be the most human (wink) horror movie in a long, long time.
Behind every great book adaptation is a forgettable first try. — By Ryan Covey