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Ask The Behind the Scenes Pic of the Day how come he’s so good at killing people.

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with today’s Behind the Scenes Pic!

David Cronenberg is one of the only old guard filmmakers shooting today that is working at the same level or higher than he was at the beginning of his career. I loved EASTERN PROMISES and today’s featured flick A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE. Then again I love awkward nudity involving Viggo Mortensen… but I think they’re genuinely sharp from a filmmaking standpoint. Cronenberg’s still on his game at an age where most of his contemporaries seem to have given up or forgotten what makes movie work.

A History of Violence blew me away when I saw it. The way Cronenberg handled the violence was brutal. He made every gunshot as scary as Michael Myers.

So, how about a little look at Cronenberg and Viggo from the making of this flick? Enjoy! Click to embiggen!



I was lucky enough to sit down with Ms. Angie Dickinson today for a nice interview, so tomorrow’s Behind the Scenes Pic will be in honor of her!

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  • April 16, 2011, 9:44 p.m. CST

    Actually, this pic is from LOTR:RETURN OF THE KING

    by wackybantha

    You can tell from the clothes that Viggo is wearing. Like, duh and stuff!

  • April 16, 2011, 9:44 p.m. CST

    Should have been Zod

    by Ghostpirate

    If we needed a Zod, Viggo should have been him.

  • April 16, 2011, 9:48 p.m. CST

    This is a great film

    by ltgalloway

    It's one of those films that requires multiple viewings in order to appreciate the work being done. Seems to happen with less and less frequency these days.

  • April 16, 2011, 9:48 p.m. CST

    it's true- Cronenberg is as good or better than he ever was


    meanwhile so many other directors from the same era churn out empty fluff or make huge missteps. I'd love to see Cronenberg tackle another psychological sci-fi horror some day soon. and he was still the best part about NIGHT BREED.

  • Seriously, they're generic lightweight action thrillers when compared to the heady sci-fi/horror of his early days, or the artful literary adaptations of his middle period. I'm glad he's tackling more deserving stuff with his Jung vs. Freud picture and the DeLillo movie, but I'm no fan of his punchdrunk Viggo phase.

  • April 16, 2011, 9:50 p.m. CST

    Viggo looks really cool...

    by Tigger Tales

    even when he's dressed like a total square.

  • April 16, 2011, 9:51 p.m. CST

    Cronenberg is the most underrated director in the history of Hollywood

    by Billy_D_Williams

    the guy is probably better than Spielberg, Scorsese and Tarantino in the directing department, yet you rarely hear this guy's name bandied about among geekdom.

  • April 16, 2011, 9:56 p.m. CST

    starwarsredux- i can see your standpoint


    ...but there is something very subtle and naturalistic about them that make them good (to me and others). there's nothing over the top, everything is smartly understated, making the action and unconventional scenes stand out as even more disturbing or shocking. it's well done, IMO.

  • April 16, 2011, 9:57 p.m. CST

    Viggo is the fucking man.

    by golden tribw

    That is all.

  • April 16, 2011, 10:04 p.m. CST

    Viggo is the man.

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

  • April 16, 2011, 10:05 p.m. CST

    Quint, winners for the Super contest??!

    by Michael_Jacksons_Ghost

  • April 16, 2011, 10:07 p.m. CST

    Don't forget Videodrome

    by Rebel Scumb

    That movie is awesomely insane.

  • April 16, 2011, 10:10 p.m. CST

    He ees Veego!

    by Nasty In The Pasty

    You are like the buzzing of flies to heem!

  • April 16, 2011, 10:10 p.m. CST

    I loved when the son shot Ed Harris through the back

    by sith_rising

    with the shotgun. great scene!

  • April 16, 2011, 10:17 p.m. CST


    by StarWarsRedux

    That's basically how I feel about all Cronenberg's films pre-"Scanners". His first two films, "Stereo" and "Crimes of the Future", are particularly well done as understated, avant-garde sci-fi. They're movies in the same vein as "La Jetee" or "THX 1138". After that-- yeah, "Shivers" and that movie with the porn actress are pretty much Romero rip-offs, but very good ones (and better than anything Romero produced post-"Dawn"). "The Brood" is a particularly underrated little family drama masquerading as body-horror (though it's a little heavy in the "it's all my ex-wife's fault" aspect). <p> <p>"Scanners" was where he first started going OTT, something that really cemented with "Videodrome", but at least then he countered the technical and graphical sensationalism with thematic ambitions. Starting with "Spider", I really believe Cronenberg lost sight, or even interest, in the big picture.

  • April 16, 2011, 10:46 p.m. CST

    would've been cool to see Viggo as Zod

    by frenetik1

  • April 16, 2011, 10:46 p.m. CST

    The Fly

    by Raggles Wimpole

    Is one of the greatest remakes of all time. It introduced us to the classic "Be afraid. Be very afraid." Mel Brooks, of all people, championed Cronenberg as the director of the film. And any film that can combine Franz Kafka, Alexander Pope, Madam Butterfly & a maggot baby deserves some kind of award.

  • April 16, 2011, 11:05 p.m. CST

    Maria Bello has the hairiest pussy in this movie

    by Majority

    She should've shaved...

  • April 16, 2011, 11:25 p.m. CST

    IMO Modern Classic

    by strykebr

    I'm a Cronenberg fanboy but I really respect this film, I quote all the time with my buddies, especially to my friend named Joey.

  • April 16, 2011, 11:47 p.m. CST


    by nolan bautista

    he's a stand-up guy..Viggo was great in Carlitos Way..the way he whined after being caught wearing a wire: "..its nothin!..its something else!..i was gonna give you a signal!!.." Awesome performance!

  • April 16, 2011, 11:55 p.m. CST

    Oh Angie, please...

    by hifiguy60

    Please use a shot from "Big Bad Mama." It's one of the all time best Angie Movies!

  • That said, shut up. It was hot.

  • April 17, 2011, 12:56 a.m. CST

    Death to Allegra Geller!

    by Gorgomel

  • April 17, 2011, 1:09 a.m. CST

    This is my favorite Cronenberg film

    by Cartagia

    With The Fly a close, close second. Eastern Promises was very close to being great with one storytelling decision about Nikolai that almost derailed the movie for me.

  • April 17, 2011, 1:12 a.m. CST


    by uberman

    The relationship between Viggo and his wife in the film was LOL stupid, contrivied and totally unbelievable. I have never meet a couple with a kid no less act like the starry eyed passionate lovers in this film. In my opinion, it destroyed what could have been a great movie. Watch it again, look at how the couple react to one another and tell me: Know any couple married for longer that 5 seconds who act like this?

  • April 17, 2011, 1:49 a.m. CST


    by blakindigo

    Yes, I have. Many couples grow even closer in their relationships. Many don't. Just because you haven't met any doesn't make your argument true.

  • April 17, 2011, 2:01 a.m. CST

    Any married couple for longer than...

    by kiwicanuck

    Five seconds? Sure. I think more importantly, most relationships go through up and down phases in terms of passion don't they? At least the ones I've been involved in, including my marriage. Weeks can go by where you hardly have time - and so the inclination - to get nasty, and yet another period, for whatever sort of rediscover the passion for another several days/weeks/months at a time. it helps when the kids are no longer the dependent babies/toddlers they once were. I kind of got the feeling these two were going through one of these periods, sort of rediscovering each other, or perhaps catching up on a bit of lost time. Perhaps that's why it never seemed unbelievable at all to me, let alone stupid. It helped that Viggo and Bello had burn the house down chemistry. I've seen this movie three times, and the relationship was never an issue.

  • April 17, 2011, 2:19 a.m. CST

    Bitchin' sunglasses on ye Cronenberg

    by RichardLuzT

    Also: I pretty much like the mentioned relationship amongst Viggo and Bello's characters. And the with their children. Of course they go through certain developments because of the story's motif but their relationship is so beautiful and strong that it couldn't be shattered. They put what could be a real family in exceptional conditions and in that respect it's very much fictional but other than that... If such things are fantasies, what's wrong in loving them?

  • April 17, 2011, 2:21 a.m. CST

    Can I haz edit button?

    by RichardLuzT

    I'm sort of homework-drunk(sleep deprivation induced) and I fucked up a couple of times on my previous comment.

  • April 17, 2011, 3:50 a.m. CST

    Vigo di magnificent, yes yes.

    by alan_poon

    Any love for Spider out there?

  • April 17, 2011, 4:05 a.m. CST

    Oh, man. Spider.

    by PTSDPete

    Glad someone mentioned that.

  • April 17, 2011, 5:26 a.m. CST

    Pssstttt... Cronie....

    by GooBoy

    I think your shirt is tucked into your underpants

  • April 17, 2011, 6:54 a.m. CST

    A History of Violence is one of my alltime favourite films

    by Col. Tigh-Fighter

    But I accept that it was a most un-Cronenberg film. But I like this new Cronenberg. Eastern Promises was very good as well. But a total shift away from bugnuts Cronenberg before.......Crash, ExitenZ, Videodrome, Naked Lunch (my god that was fucked up"!). AHOV has one of my favourite endings for a film fullstop......around the dinner table. Perfect! I guess DC has mellowed in old age. No more typewriter insects or evil TV sets for him!

  • April 17, 2011, 8:09 a.m. CST

    How about some love for the writer?

    by Hipshot

    Josh Olson did a fabulous job with the script, and is a great human being. As for the relationship...yeah, my wife and I have a kid, and we go through phases where we are EXACTLY like the couple in the movie, in terms of acting like kids. Sorry if that hasn't been your experience.

  • April 17, 2011, 8:21 a.m. CST

    The sex scene on the stairs in "History of Violence"

    by ufoclub1977

    Seems a little bit contrived or pushed by the directors hand. But those odd ticks are what makes a Cronenberg film.

  • April 17, 2011, 9:21 a.m. CST

    Talked with Josh about the sex scenes...

    by Hipshot

    He was under the impression that he'd put the first "69" scene in a Hollywood film (nope, at the least, he was beaten by "Looking For Mr. Goodbar") but the intent was to demonstrate the depth of their love and intimacy (scene #1) while the second scene was an externalization of the pain and stress of their relationship--passion against the discomfort of setting. Such techniques are often used by writers to express discomfort or disapproval, or lack of intimacy, or raw sex devoid of love(sex on desktops, sinks, against walls, etc.). I think Josh deserved his Oscar nomination.

  • April 17, 2011, 9:32 a.m. CST

    Love This Movie So Much

    by Crow3711

    Seriously. One of the best "violence is visited on a small town" movies ever. Cinematic brilliance. Incredible performances all around. Just can't say enough good things about this one. Love it more every time I check it out. I watched this for the first time with my mother while on vacation.....yikes...awwwkward. The cheerleader outfit was pretty bad, him going down on her in the outfit was worse, and the staircase scene was just uncomfortable. the end, we both totally loved the movie. Of course

  • April 17, 2011, 10:06 a.m. CST

    "DeathToTheDemonessAllegraGeller"would be an awesome handle here

    by StarWarsRedux

  • April 17, 2011, 10:09 a.m. CST

    Nice to see some love for "Spider".

    by BarryConvex

    It's one of Cronenberg's most underrated/over looked films.

  • April 17, 2011, 11:07 a.m. CST

    Maria Bello was so damn hot in this movie

    by D.Vader

  • April 17, 2011, 11:08 a.m. CST


    by Darth_Kaos

    He's only one of 5 directors that I've seen everyone of his movies (based on them only). Marty and Steven are not one of the other 4. That should tell you something about Hollywood. THE MOST UNDERRATED DIRECTOR...NO DOUBT! But I think he likes it that way!

  • April 17, 2011, 11:20 a.m. CST

    Cronenberg Crash > Haggis Crash

    by FleshMachine

    challenging art and ideas vs. contrived preachy artificial nonsense.

  • April 17, 2011, 11:21 a.m. CST


    by FleshMachine

    i guess you dont know me and my wife. sorry about your future sex life.

  • April 17, 2011, 11:32 a.m. CST

    Will tomorrow's Angie Dickinson-related pic be from "Dressed to Kill"?

    by Jet Jaguar

  • April 17, 2011, 11:35 a.m. CST

    Leader of the first 2 baddies that roll into town...

    by Nice Marmot

    ...crack up now whenever I see him on Seinfeld as Elaine's shrink . . .

  • April 17, 2011, 12:30 p.m. CST

    One of Cronenbergs best of any era...


    The man has seriously never made a bad movie. Spider is probably my least favorite though. Existenz is extremely underrated. Love the close-up of the dude in the Diners face after Viggo shoots him in the head. That one shot just evokes old school Cronenberg like none other in his current films. I would have to say that The Fly is his masterpiece. The Dead Zone is also underrated as a Cronenberg flick and as one of the better Stephen King adaptations.

  • April 17, 2011, 12:33 p.m. CST

    dr. decker

    by iampain

    really want a nightbreed unrated directors cut.

  • April 17, 2011, 12:49 p.m. CST

    "hipshot": Regarding the sex scenes...

    by ufoclub1977

    so they were written that way in the script? I had thought maybe it was pushed into that kind of energy just for the filming. Nothing wrong with the ambition to try something new and edgy (like have the first 69 scene in a mainstream American movie). It just stood out on my viewing in a discordant way. I just read that rant by Josh Olsen in The Village Voice. Yikes!

  • April 17, 2011, 1:15 p.m. CST


    by frank cotton

    is one of the most intelligent people on earth. LONG LIVE THE NEW FLESH!

  • April 17, 2011, 2:23 p.m. CST

    I much preferred Eastern Promises...

    by freerangecelt

    A History of Violence just fell flat to me, and I am a fan of Viggo and Ed Harris (I even liked Appalossa!) but this one didn't live up to it's hype.

  • April 17, 2011, 2:44 p.m. CST

    Viggo should be playing Roland in the Dark Tower movie.

    by Dr. Samuel Loomis


  • April 17, 2011, 3:16 p.m. CST

    William Hurt is brilliant in this movie

    by elsewhere

    While Viggo and Harris are great, Hurt is the standout of the film in my opinion.

  • April 17, 2011, 3:22 p.m. CST

    The best comic book film. Period. FACT!!!!


  • April 17, 2011, 3:23 p.m. CST

    No rambling "I'm a talentless douchebag" poetics frank cotton?

    by MooseMalloy

    Get to it jackass!

  • Sure, the subjects may be a bit more straightforward and "normal" than we're used to from Cronenberg, but he's exploring the same themes that drove SHIVERS, THE BROOD, THE FLY, DEAD RINGERS and VIDEODROME: tangible and intangible identity, the physicality of emotion and identity, the nature of reality and point of view. On the surface, A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE and EASTERN PROMISES are more banal or prosaic, which is likely part of the point (also, they help Cronenberg explore his pet themes with studio money), but they are just as probing and poetic as his earlier work, perhaps moreso in some respects. And they're still goddamn entertaining movies made by one of the premier cinematic artists craftsmen working today.

  • April 17, 2011, 3:30 p.m. CST

    artists *and* craftsmen


    CHOPPAH's hung over. Cut him some fucking slack.

  • Check out PONTYPOOL -'nuff said!

  • April 17, 2011, 5:18 p.m. CST


    by uberman

    But I am very familiar with your wife, as is the local baseball, soccer and football team.

  • April 17, 2011, 5:20 p.m. CST

    More Cronenberg.

    by longlivethenewflesh

    can never have to much new flesh.

  • WHICH IS ENTIRELY THE FUCKING POINT. The marriage is too good to be true because "Tom" is too good to be true. Did you turn off the movie after the shootout on the farm? Motherfucking CHOPPED.

  • April 17, 2011, 8:13 p.m. CST

    An amazing film.

    by Nomoredirtyanything

    Cronenberg is a Master of the art.

  • April 17, 2011, 10:10 p.m. CST


    by Andrew Coleman

    Fuck yes to that movie. I've always loved it. Cronenberg is one of the best hands down. Need to watch History of Violence again.

  • April 17, 2011, 11:26 p.m. CST

    As an irishman from Philadelphia...

    by Kammich

    ...I had no choice but to love this movie. But no, seriously, its a fucking awesome movie. Goes against the grain of most of Cronenberg's resume, but still retains enough of his off-the-cuff sensibilities to remain unique. Personally, I loved the way the marriage was portrayed. Emotions were running high in every sense. Bello's mis-trust that everything she knows about her husband may be, essentially, a lie... Mortensen having committed more cold-blooded murder, and knowing that yet even more cold-blooded murder is on the horizon... at least in my personal experience, when emotions begin to run SO FUCKING HIGH that you can't even begin to make heads or tails of logical thinking? THAT is when passion gets the best of you. And thats what is shown in the film. I also love that the Ed Harris character is a bit of a "red herring." He is set up as the big-baddie, and you're like, "oh sweet the villain in this movie is Ed Harris with a badass eye scar." Then, boom, they turn the tables and you're left thinking "OH SHIT WILLIAM HURT IS IN THIS? YES!"

  • April 18, 2011, 7:44 a.m. CST


    by Hipshot

    I cannot say the degree of collaboration between writer and director here---there is almost always some of that. That said, Josh's position is that he created those scenes, and Cronenburg filmed them. I've yet to see a specific comment from Cronenburg on the subject.

  • April 18, 2011, 9:14 a.m. CST


    by frank cotton

    What do we do now?

  • April 18, 2011, 9:50 p.m. CST

    RE: Angie Dickenson

    by ttomato

    DId you ever see the miniseries Wild Palms ('93) that AD starred in? Would you have any pictures from that? She was my favorite villian for years after that! "The bitch stole my eyes"!

  • April 19, 2011, 1:25 p.m. CST

    Don't know what's going through the minds of people here..

    by Monroville

    A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE one of Cronenberg's best? Really? Have any of you read the comic/graphic novel the movie was based on? <p> The thing is, I found the movie to be quite boring... nothing about it I hadn't seen somewhere else, yet with that Shamalayan pacing to it. What made me actually hate the film was when I got ahold of the graphic novel and saw just how simplified and bastardized the story was. <p> I am not going to spoil it, as you have to read the comic book. The title actually has meaning, as it directly applies to what happens to the other boy Viggo's character did his past deed with. What upsets me even more is that the story is perfect Cronenberg material, even down to the image of 2 boy scouts with gas masks and uzis, entering a recently tear gassed barber shop gunning down the local mafia boss (not to mention the aforementioned title meaning). <p> If there is any movie that needs to be remade, this is it. <p> And as far as more mainstream Cronenberg, I would say DEAD ZONE is his best (followed by SCANNERS). Everything from SHIVERS to DEAD RINGERS I like to really love, but something happened akin to John Carpenter where everything just became boring and flat, regardless of the weirdness. Maybe the point was to feel detached, but between NAKED LUNCH, CRASH and A HISTORY OF VIOLENCE, there is just something "meh" to all of them that earlier weird movies like VIDEODROME do not have.