Mini-Review: Splice (2010)

Splice (2010)

Starring Adrien Brody, Sarah Polley, Delphine Chanéac, Brandon McGibbon, Simona Maicanescu, David Hewlett, Abigail Chu

Directed by Vincenzo Natali

Expectations: Low.


Splice starts off rather well, peaks about forty minutes in, and then slowly declines until the last fifteen minutes or so. At this point it reaches the cliff of the Grand Canyon and jumps off into oblivion. Despite this bullshit final reel, Splice is actually pretty enjoyable for the most part and is surprisingly shocking at times, even to my depraved mind. Throughout the film the story hinted and teased that it might go down a certain path, but being a studio picture I thought it wouldn’t dare actually do it. They do go there and it’s shocking both visually and morally when they do. When you really think about what you’re witnessing, it’s some twisted shit and I wouldn’t have expected a major Hollywood picture to be this fucked up. It’s a shame that the script wasn’t as good as it could have been, because Splice isn’t too far away from being great, at least in the idea department. The elements are clearly here but the weak, plodding script lacks tension and genuine narrative flow. Even still, Splice is a lot better than I expected it to be.

Adrien Brody and Sarah Polley are both adequate as the genetic research couple, but the star of the show is really Delphine Chanéac as their creation. Without revealing too much, she manages to encompass the questioning nature of her character and the mannerisms associated with her unique situation. The FX are great as well, as director Vincenzo Natali wisely has the masters at KNB providing killer practical FX that get as much screen time as their CG counterparts. The integration between the two is very well done and helps to sell the over-the-top plot to even the most jaded viewer. KNB’s work dominates the majority of close-up FX shots, allowing the intense details of the physical models to inform your mind when the less detailed CG versions take the reigns for the medium-range shots. Natali’s shot selection and framing is also excellent and adds quite a bit of intrigue and interest to the film through clever camerawork and beautiful cinematography.

The final reel is pretty piss-poor though, as it’s pretty clear that they had run out of ideas half an hour earlier. Any goodwill built up over the course of the film is quickly dissipated and the film ends with a telegraphed, bullshit moment that was only inserted so a sequel could be churned out if the film proved successful. Oh well, it was pretty fun while it lasted.

5 comments to Mini-Review: Splice (2010)

  • The director is the guy who made Cube… right?

  • Mike_D

    Man, this movie was disturbing. Horrifyingly misguided. I’ve never felt so sorry from watching a movie. Don’t you think it would have been perfectly fine as a straight forward creature feature? Fantastic, tasteful production value. I thought it would be a good example of the big timers doing some pleasing entertaining work. Avoid at all cost, I say. It only made me and the person I saw it with sorry.

    Actually, no. We ended up recommending it strongly to a person we were trying to play a cruel trick on. So, its worth that.

    • Yeah it would have been better received as a straight horror movie. I actually may have liked it less, but it would be more satisfying overall, if that makes sense. I’m just surprised that a big studio fronted the money for this story, regardless of quality. I actually liked the first half fairly well, but the second half just left a bad taste in my mouth.

      HAHAHA, I’ll have to watch out when you recommend a movie.

  • Lau-ra not Laur-a

    I still think that the credits should have rolled when blondie discovers them in the barn…

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