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— W.C.U.N — Pittsburgh!!

BRAINSCAN (1994) Dir. John Flynn. Written by Andrew Kevin Walker based on a Story by Brian Owens. Starring: Edward Furlong, Frank Langella, and T. Ryder Smith

"Death, Death, Death . . . Part Two." So says Michael (Furlong) when questioned about his in-class viewing habits by the School Dean and if that doesn't win you over to this morbid little sonovabitch with a bum leg and even bummer back story then his Igor inspired answering service, love for Fangoria, and Steven Tyler damn well should. Brainscan, based on an early Andrew Kevin Walker script (Seven, 8mm, Sleepy Hollow) was one of many 90's attempts to establish a new franchise killer a la Freddy Krueger and while it fails in that regard it does succeed in delivering a delightfully demented slice of early 90's gaming horror - CD-ROMS!!! T. Ryder Smith's Trickster is a surprisingly solid villain and while not nearly as memorable as say Candyman from the same era, I am a little more than surprised that he didn't inspire at least one direct to video sequel. Alas, perhaps he was a little too verbose and dandy to really grab the audience by the naughty bits and the story itself - that of a video game cum virtual reality cum stalk and slash trip doesn't really instill much suspense, especially with a did it happen or not ending. Still, it's an entertaining enough way to spend 90 minutes or so and the set design, music, and fashion are so spot on for a certain period of time that its good for a little nostalgia porn as well. Plus there's a totally pointless Frank Langella appearance that while supposedly meant to introduce some tension in the proceedings really amounts to nothing so much as a lot of over-serious standing around at crime scenes - still it's Langella and you take whatever Langella you can get when you can get it.  

 

 

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