It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
Now here's a particularly nasty little number. "The Brood" is an el sleazo exploitation film, camouflaged by the presence of several well-known stars but guaranteed to nauseate you all the same.
That's after it bores you first. It's about a scientist who may or may not be mad, and who runs something called the Institute for Psycho-Plasmics, and some of whose patients have the knack of creating clones of little kids and then controlling them with manic mind power.
The clones are gestated in wombs outside the body, and they have no navels-which is always an alarming sign in enterprises of this nature. The good doctor's institute (which somehow kept reminding me of Mel Brooks' Institute for the Very, Very Nervous) is run as a sort of cult, with all the patients competing for roles in the communal psychodramas. Meanwhile, the clones are hidden away while the doctor tries to decide if he's going to get the Nobel Prize or only a subpoena.
The doctor is played by Oliver Reed, who is very good at projecting a sense of evil menace. His prize patient is played by Samantha Eggar, who must have read the script first, I suppose, and yet accepted it anyway, even though the film's last moments have her snarling, licking up blood and otherwise seriously undermining her glamorous image. Do performers sometimes feel it's noble to take hideously unpleasant roles?