This is a different kind of episode. You can’t see this movie yet, well at least not with some difficulty. This is a feature that I saw at the Portland Horror Film Festival, and it was by far my favorite. This will be available for streaming probably at the end of the year. It’s making the festival run right now, so if you can catch it at one, definitely do.
The Brain That Wouldn’t Die tells the story of mad scientist/surgeon Bill Cortner as he tries to defy the laws of nature and resurrect the dead. In a tragic car accident, Bill’s wife Jan is decapitated and he rushes to save her head with science!
While Jan’s disembodied head begs to die, Bill and his lab assistant Kurt search far and wide for the perfect replacement body for his wife. Preferably one with big’ole titties.
Review of The Brain That Wouldn’t Die (2020)
The Brain that Wouldn’t Die is a loving remake to the 1962 film of the same name. You might recognise it from Mystery Science Theater 3000, when they lambasted the original reanimated head-on-a-table film.
This film is surprisingly faithful to the original with a lot of the original dialogue, but with a distinctly more humorous tone. It’s in the realm of B-Movie homage comedy/horror films like Re-Animator and Young Frankenstein. That may sound like hyperbole, but this film is very similar to those two, and really funny.
Most impressive is how well they pulled off this film with an estimated $80,000 budget. To give you a sense of how little that is, the original that was actually filmed in 1959 had a budget of an estimated $62,000, which would be over half of a million in 2020 dollars.
The lead played by Patrick Green is pitch perfect, and the acting from the rest of the cast really sells the serious, but not serious tone of the movie.
If you would like a more modern take on brains and how they work, check out our review of Possessor Uncut.
Definitely go see it if you can. If you are a fan of Mel Brooks style humor, this is well worth your time to seek out.
Look for it at film festivals near you, and on streaming services later this year.
Expand for Spoilers
It’s kind of silly to care about spoilers on a remake of a 60 year old movie, but here are some points of discussion that we had on the episode.
The opening black and white credits are copied from the original film. This is underscored by the original music. This really sets the stage for a 50s-60s B-Movie experience
The tone of the film is established right out of the gate. The acting is intentional overacting, and sight-gags start immediately. As Bill is performing a surgery in the opening scene, a comical amount of perfectly timed blood sprays directly into his eyes.
The next sight gag, which is a favorite of the writer producer Hank Huffman, is the two doctors ripping off their scrubs to reveal full suits and ties underneath.
A lot of the dialogue is taken directly from the original movie. Even seemingly comedic lines like “our baby isn’t going to be a test tube baby” is in the original. Some of my favorite lines are:
- The response to “let me die” is “we should do as she asks”
- “I am the only man in the world capable of reviving a human head.”
- “She’s been decapitated”, “What!?”, “it means beheaded”
- “never mind her, she’s recovering from a brain injury.”