"Rabies, an ex-porn star and Cronenburg... Brilliant! Well, almost"
An experimental skin graft leaves Marilyn Chambers with a flesh penetrating phallic organ under her armpit that spreads a particularly heinous form of rabies to all that embrace her. Fucking ingenious. Why didn't I think of that?There’s not a whole lot to spoil about this plot. The opening paragraph pretty much sums it all up. David Cronenburg has always had a knack for taking the most bizarre ideas and transforming them into quirky masterpieces. While not as good as some of Cronenburg's best efforts, "Rabid" excels in being an atmospheric and dark chiller that never takes itself too seriously.
Marilyn Chambers gives a decent performance in the lead role as the carrier of a wicked strain of rabies that causes the people she infects to become flesh-crazed zombies that foam at the mouth. Her role doesn't require her to do much more than get naked, vacantly read her lines and entice unsuspecting males into having sex with her. Sounds like the basic acting requirements for your typical porno. There is one key difference here though...
When she tries to resist the temptation to spread her disease she begins having withdrawals similar to those of a heroin addict. Although she is usually partially or fully nude when going through these cravings, you would have to be one sick puppy to get wood watching these events. She writhes around convulsing and screaming in anguish during these scenes.
Cronenburg manages to pull all this schlock together and crafts a creepy film that overachieves on all levels. Elements of your typical "Night of The Living Dead" rip-off and vampirism are brought together to form a disturbing sleeper.
The resolution is a bummer but it is true to the tone set during the rest of the movie.Cronenburg fans will love it and it has enough T&A to divert Non-Cronenburg cronies.