“Bride Of Re-Animator” Is A Desirable Fantasy Of Mutilation & Power Struggles

Bride of Re-Animator sees the brilliant Jeffrey Combs reprise his role as mad scientist Dr. Herbert West, this time turning his attentions to creating the “perfect” woman. Laura Shearer takes a look at Arrow Video’s Limited Edition Blu-ray…

A horror sequel that gets better as the story line gets worse. Four years on from the original 1985 film The Re-Animator arrives Bride of Re-Animator. Thinking along the lines of Frankenstein which was followed up with Bride of Frankenstein, Re-Animator’s marital sequel is of a similar nature just placed in the 1980s.

The H P Lovecraft horror writings that the characters and basic plot derives from is a far stretch from the age of enlightenment of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein novel. H P Lovecraft of course holds no restraint on imagination and in due respect, Bride of Re-Animator holds par.

1980s horror has a particular boldness to it; more guts, more gore and more graphic imagery than the 1970s could muster. Splicing together random body parts that can be physically re-animated, the science behind which isn’t totally conceivable, makes for some disgusting special effects and gruesome creatures that suitably disturb.

Talking severed heads and mobilising everything he can get his hands on, Dr West dreams of taking the best pieces from human bodies to create the ideal female body. Naturally the consequences are vomit-inducing blood-soaked scenes of pain endurance and torture being inflicted upon the monstrosity that he deems woman. The bride herself can crudely be identified as indeed woman due to the always-on-show breasts; a common exploitation device for horror like this.

The sequences of re-animated parts are why you should indulge in this ridiculous fantasy of mutilation and power struggles. The horrifically mismatched pieces bring an unnerving delight. You can’t help but wonder how any of the re-animated things you see on the screen even fit together, never mind work together to coherently move unaided.

A deliriously tacky synth music soundtrack accompanies this extreme re-imagining of Frankenstein’s bride. One thing to note is that the dialogue may be basic, but it isn’t unbearable, meaning the cringe factor lies merely in the dated effects.

Bride of Re-Animator, four stars

Written by Laura Shearer

Directed by: Brian Yuzna
Written by: Rick Fry, Woody Keith, Brian Yuzna
Starring: Jeffrey Combs, Bruce Abbott, Fabiana Udenio, Kathleen Kinmont
Released: 1990 / Genre: Horror / Country: USA / IMDB / More reviews: Latest | Archive
About the Author
Film enthusiast and lover of all things cinema, Laura holds a BA/MA in film studies theory and lectures/tutors film students.

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