ByMara Mullikin, writer at
I'm an aspiring writer, filmmaker, actress and werewolf.
Mara Mullikin

This 1986 Cronenberg classic dealt with a gifted scientist named Seth Brundle (Jeff Goldblum) turning into a human-fly hybrid after a mishap with his teleportation machine. The film interwove profound themes of love, losing one's humanity and the consequences of technology. It was a critical and financial success, but during its development there was a test screening that produced a strongly negative response. In this screening there was an infamous clip known as the "monkey-cat scene".

In this scene, Seth is halfway through his metamorphis and he's desperate to find a cure. For an inexplicable test, he puts a baboon and cat into two separate teleportation pods and after running the device's sequence through, they're spliced into a monkey-cat creature. The resulting visual is far from bearable as the mutated animal is hideously disfigured and squirming, and screeching in excruciating pain. Unsatisfied with the end product Brundle grabs a crow bar and senselessly beats it to death.

When this was shown at a Toronto screening apparently an audience member barfed, and the general audience became disenfranchised with Seth and no longer sympathized his anguish. Producer Stuart Cornfield commented, "If you beat an animal to death, even a monkey-cat, your audience is not gonna be interested in your problems anymore". As a result this scene wasn't included in the final film and was released when The Fly came out on a special two disc DVD edition almost twenty years later. Is it as bad as they say it is? Watch the clip below from Youtube and see for yourself.

Now, with it being almost thirty years since the film's release would today's audience react the same? Personally, besides the cheesy monkey-cat special effects I find this scene to be gruesome and cruel. And in today's world while the majority has become desensitized by modern films and TV I think this would still be hard for some to watch. Something like this is typical in a Family Guy episode (Kermit and Piggy's deformed child), and just because we're used to seeing something this demented doesn't mean we're accepting of it.


Is this scene too disturbing?

Sources:, and


Latest from our Creators