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Review: The Fury (1978)

Mountain Monkey November 29, 2013 Reviews 2 Comments on Review: The Fury (1978)

Review by: Mountain Monkey
SCUM Rating: ★   

Ol' blue eyes -- Gillian Bellaver (Amy Irving) uses her ESP powers in The Fury.

Ol’ blue eyes — Gillian Bellaver (Amy Irving) uses her ESP powers in The Fury.

Brian De Palma’s The Fury (1978) gets the high definition treatment with not one but two Blu-ray releases this year. Back in March, Twilight Time released their Blu-ray of The Fury for the American market and it promptly sold out (given its limited edition run of 3,000 copies). Boutique film distributor Arrow Video has just released another version of the movie for the UK market, and it’s available at a more reasonable price.

There are apparently quality differences in the video remastering of the movie between the two releases, but from what I’ve seen of the Arrow Video release, video and audio quality are excellent. There are interesting extras to the Arrow Video release too, including interviews with cinematographer Richard Kline and actress Fiona Lewis.

If like me, you haven’t seen The Fury before this Blu-ray release, you’re in for a definite treat.

Starring heavyweights like Kirk Douglas and John Cassavetes, The Fury centers around an ex-secret agent Peter Sandza (Douglas), who early in the movie is betrayed by his shadowy friend Ben Childress (Cassavetes). Childress kidnaps Sandza’s psychic son Robin (Andrew Stevens) for a secret weapons research program and soon begins to groom another psychic teenager Gillian Bellaver (Amy Irving) for the program.

Kirk Douglas (playing Peter Sandza) gets furious in The Fury.

Kirk Douglas (playing Peter Sandza) gets furious in The Fury.

Both Stevens and Irving put in good performances as the psychic teenagers, but the movie really belongs to Douglas and Cassavetes, who dominate the screen with their presence, despite being at the tale end of their acting careers.

A spot of bother -- Ben Childress' (John Cassavetes) warming up for his explosive ending.

A spot of bother — Ben Childress’ (John Cassavetes) warming up for his explosive ending.

Haven't I seen that angry frown before? ESP stare in The Fury (top) and Scanners (bottom).

Haven’t I seen that angry frown before? ESP stare in The Fury (top) and Scanners (bottom).

The Fury has more than a passing resemblance to director Brian De Palma’s earlier horror feature Carrie, which was released two years earlier in 1976. Both films deal with telekinesis and have equally bloody endings. The scripting and directing of The Fury is exceptionally tight though, that you’d hardly notice.

I was struck though by the similarities between The Fury and David Cronenberg’s Scanners (1981) — ESP, angry brooding teenagers, exploding heads — watch them back to back for a comparison!

The Fury is not as well known as Carrie or De Palma’s classics like Scarface (1983). With the release of The Fury on Blu-ray though, there’s never been a better time to check out this screen gem.

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About The Author

Mountain Monkey's cozy childhood afternoons with Thunderbirds were forever shattered by a creepy matinee, 'The Creature from the Black Lagoon'. Things were never quite the same for Mountain Monkey, who developed a fascination for the esoteric side of cinema from a worryingly young age. These days, Mountain Monkey would rather be catching up with some shut eye and the latest Criterion Collection release, but the SCUM mission has come calling. Ohm...

2 Comments

  1. iantheawesome December 3, 2013 at 2:51 am

    This movie sounds awesome! I must view it with my eyeballs. Great review.

    -EMB
    http://epicmoviebonanza.wordpress.com/

    • SCUM December 3, 2013 at 7:13 am

      Yes, you should!

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