Rating the Films: David Cronenberg

  • ***1/2
  • Eastern Promises (2007)

  • ***
  • Existenz (1999)
  • The Fly (1986)
  • A History of Violence (2005)

  • **1/2
  • Dead Ringers (1988)

  • **
  • Videodrome (1983)

  • *
  • Crash (1996)
Author Comments: 

Cronenberg has a penchant for working with the dark edges of the universe; I'd say that's due to his being a Canadian, but too many other directors are attracted to the dark side as well. A multi-talented force, he's written, has edited, and even produced his own and others' work. Here's how his films rate.

I've rated the films from a zero (horrible!) to four (wonderful!) star scale, with the links going to my reviews. As usual, I've only included films I've seen.

As someone who has seen all of them save for Fast Company and his early shorts, here is my order:

Naked Lunch 10/10
Dead Ringers 10/10
Spider 10/10
Videodrome 10/10
The Fly 9/10
The Brood 9/10
M. Butterfly 9/10
eXistenZ 8/10
Eastern Promises 7/10
Shivers 7/10
History Of Violence 7/10
Rabid 6/10
Crash 6/10
Scanners 5/10
Dead Zone 5/10

So it seems that you like him more when he's in his sci/fi gross-out edge, and I like him more when he's doing more mainstream fare. Though to be fair, even his mainstream stuff is pretty out there...

Naked Lunch was the movie that got me into subversive cinema in first place and I never looked back. I always associated him with "weird-ass shit". He has always been my favorite director of all time until just recently when I decided to go with a #1 that has had a history of doing more straight-forward stories. He still hovers in my top 3 of all time though.

Yeah, even his mainstream stuff IS still a little bit out there. I doubt most any other mainstream director would have had that intense stairway sex scene in Hx of Violence, nor the kneeling scene or the bathhouse scenes in Eastern Promises. His images just stick with you no matter what context theyre in or how comparatively tame they are.