Cronenberg’s adaptation of the difficult Ballard novel is an archetypal, considerate, yet transformative flick that unsettles the viewer throughout. Often misjudged as sensationalist and excessively provocative, this film is a critical take on a not-too-distant, brazenly blasé and consumerist dystopia, through the motif of clandestine desires.
THE GOOD: Longtime Cronee-collaborator Howard Shore’s omniscient and emotionally enriched score.
THE BAD: Paraphilia aside, every component of the film makes for genuinely uncomfortable viewing. Great for some, too much to handle for others.
THE UGLY: James Spader’s behind.