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Man with the Screaming Brain
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Man with the Screaming Brain is a story of greed, betrayal and revenge in the big, bad city. William Cole, wealthy industrialist, winds up with part of his brain replaced by that of Yegor, a Bulgarian street hustler. The two couldn't be more different, but they share one thing - both were killed by the same woman. Brought back to life by a mad scientist, William and Yegor form an unlikely partnership to track down their common nemesis.
The Man with the Screaming Brain is cult superstar Bruce Campbell (Evil Dead 2), who also makes his directorial debut in this loopy blend of '50s-style science fiction thrills and slapstick comedy. Campbell plays a businessman who meets an untimely end at the hands of a vicious Gypsy femme fatale, who has also done in her ex-fiancée, an KGB-agent-turned-taxi-driver. Mad doctor Stacy Keach provides a solution for both men by stitching together their brains inside Campbell's dome; with no other option but to work together, the pair sent out to find their killer. What results is a broadly funny and frantic showcase for Campbell's physical comedy skills, with Ted Raimi (Spider-Man, Xena) offering hilarious support as Keach's wacky assistant. Campbell fanatics will appreciate the DVD's extras, which include a featurette on the film's lengthy gestation (18 years from conception to completion), and commentary by Campbell and producer David Goodman; a trailer, behind-the-scenes footage, and storyboards round out the supplemental features. --Paul Gaita
- Aspect Ratio : 1.77:1
- Is Discontinued By Manufacturer : No
- MPAA rating : s_medNotRated Unrated (Not Rated)
- Product Dimensions : 7.5 x 5.25 x 0.75 inches; 4 Ounces
- Media Format : Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Surround Sound, Widescreen
- Run time : 1 hour and 30 minutes
- Release date : October 4, 2005
- Actors : Bruce Campbell, Tamara Gorski, Ted Raimi, Stacy Keach, Vladimir Kolev
- Language : English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
- Studio : Starz / Anchor Bay
- ASIN : B000AQ69QS
- Number of discs : 1
- Best Sellers Rank: #50,728 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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The other cast members are wonderful in their roles: Tamara Gorski as the evil Tatoya, and her ex-fiancé Yegor (Vladimir Kolev) are perfect as the confounding duo, while Antoinette Byron as Jackie Cole is the perfect annoying rich wife. My favorite casting decisions were the scientists: Stacy Keach as Dr. Ivan Ivanovich Ivanov could not be more perfect, and his wacky assistant, Pavel, is played by Campbell's old pal Ted Raimi to great comic effect. The Russian (Bulgarian?) accent Keach adopts is better than average for a B-movie, and makes some words genuinely difficult to understand (in the line I used for my title it's hard to tell if he says "flashes" or "flushes" for instance); this added to the depth of the Keach character substantially. You may like Raimi's robot rap, but then again you may not; it grew on me in the second viewing.
The film starts with a horrifying cab ride through Sofia. The driver, Yegor, takes them through "Gypsytown" where he has to fight off a carjacking. During this outing he sees his ex-fiancée, Tatoya, and inadvertently sets an extremely unusual love quadrangle into play. I don't want to give away the plot, but as is pointed out in the commentary, if you follow a key piece of jewelry through the film, the rest of the plot unfolds around it. It is unusual for a large number of main characters to die in the first act of any movie, but that's the beauty of Stacy Keach as a crazed scientist. Keach is able to reanimate the dead and in the process creates a very gothic Frankenstein effect.
There are many comic relief moments in the film: I enjoyed the scene in which Campbell changes clothes in a dumpster; I also found the restaurant scene with the self-induced swirley in a revolting toilet, followed by a milk and ice bath to work quite well. I was not as enamored with the robot as Campbell was on the commentary; for me a little went a long way. I absolutely loved the fact that Campbell (as the creature) rode a pink Vespa (moped) with tassels on the handlebars during a key chase scene through Sofia; I also found the robot catfight in a bridal shop scene (more brides should carry pistols in their garters) to be relentlessly entertaining. The homage to Mike Tyson in a bar fight was also well done, as were the general right-versus-left brain problems Campbell encounters. The robot death scene was well done camp at its best, although it could have been edited for time a bit in my opinion. In the end the messy love quadrangle is resolved in a novel (though somewhat predictable) way that worked well.
The DVD has lots of great extras. The commentary track is very interesting, and I actually liked watching the film more the second time. There are several "making of" extras, and I especially enjoyed the account of the 18 year ordeal of getting the movie made: you wouldn't think that would be interesting, but it is.
The film started a little slowly (the characters are totally disagreeable in the beginning), but after I warmed up to it I really enjoyed it. It doesn't measure up to "Bubba Ho-tep," but easily gets four stars.
I wonder if Bruce's directions to Ted Raimi were, "Just channel Joxer, kid." Because I had major flashbacks to _Xena_ eps. Not that it's a bad thing at all! I loved it! And I adored his fake Russian accent, especially when his real accent slipped through on occasion along with the whiny tone of voice, just made it all that more ridiculous and fun. It was worth tuning in just to see Ted jamming to hip-hop and pulling those wonderful facial expressions.
Those two together are comedy gold; they so need to team up on more movies. Bruce could do justice to a serious A-movie role any day, but I'm so glad he keeps doing B-grade films; when he nails them, he does it but good! And Ted is such a damn fine geek. Whether he's doing a serious role or not, he's just made for that part, plays it beautifully. Together, the two of them do some sweet scenery chewing.
Top reviews from other countries
The story of an American business man with wife going to Russia or some eastern European country.
It's light hearted and fun. Not to be taken seriously.
Acting is not good.
Campbell hat einfach einen Hang zum schrägen Slapstick, was man diesen Film mehr als anmerkt. Ich kann damit umgehen, auch wenn der Film selbst kein Meilenstein ist. Aber ich sehe einfach "Ash" sehr gerne :D