With the prevalence of torture porn (no, I'm not afraid to use that term and yes, I think it's accurate) movies like the Saw and Hostel films over the last couple of years, I'm more than ready for a new kind of horror movie experience and it looks like Splice might be just the thing the doctor ordered (pun intended as you will see shortly).
Splice is being produced by Guillermo del Toro and directed by Vincenzo Natali. You've probably heard of del Toro: His past films include Mimic, Blade II, Hellboy and the critically acclaimed horror/fairy tale for grownups Pan's Labyrinth (which reminds me, I need to add that last one to my rental list). Who is Natali? His most famous movie as far as American audiences are concerned would be the most excellent sci-fi/horror film Cube.
Before I get to more about the movie, be aware that a couple of the images below probably fall under the category of "NSFW" or "Not Safe For Work" due to some female nudity. You should also be aware that they are quite creepy and you might even consider them a bit disturbing, so you're been warned and click on them at your own risk.
The story revolves around a couple of geneticists (played by Adrien Brody and Sarah Polley) who decide to throw ethics out the window and experiment with splicing together the genes of a human with that of animals. They illegally create a hybrid (pictured below) and try to hide her from the world. As you can no doubt guess, they probably don't succeed.
Director Vincenzo Natali says that the film is:
"...about finding humanity in the monster and... the monsters that lurk within humanity."
The story and images give off a definite David Cronenberg vibe. Some of the most horrifying images are those of people who are disfigured in some way and it looks like this movie will tap into that primal aspect of our minds. Much like H.R. Giger's work, sometimes the most effective use of this is to combine extreme beauty with some odd mutation... it pulls at both sides of the brain, both attracting a repelling us at the same time.
If the script is decent and this is done well, it could be a VERY effective sci-fi/horror movie.
There's no solid release date for this yet, but they're aiming for some time in 2009.
Source (images and story): AICN