Cabinet of Curiosities
After an explosion in a coal mine, a doctor is called in to perform an autopsy on the 10 men that were killed, but he gets more than he bargained for.
After a series of unexplained disappearances and the discovery of a body completely drained of blood, the suspected murderer runs into a mine and detonates an explosive device that kills 10 people including himself. Sheriff Nate Craven (Glynn Turman) calls on his old friend Dr. Carl Winters (F. Murray Abraham) to perform the autopsy on the miners to insure that the deceased family members get the appropriate insurance payout. Nate recounts what happen days before the explosion explaining what they know about Elliot Sykes (Luke Roberts), the suspected murderer and bomber. Doctor Winters then begins autopsying several of the miners, finding many of them have been drained of all their blood and he begins to piece together what happened and the unbelievable conclusions that must be drawn. Can the doctor discover the truth before his own life is put in jeopardy? Watch and find out!
The first two episodes of Cabinet of Curiosities relied solely on good performances, excellent writing and compelling stories and did not use any type of gory shock value to gross out the audience. They were also a type of morality tale, showing how bad things happen to bad people. The third episode diverges from this path. Although it is excellently written and with an academy award winning actor such as F. Murray Abraham as the lead, the performances were top notch, but there was also a lot of gore that I am not sure it needed. I suppose they were trying to satisfy that portion of the audience who expects bloody visual stimulation, but I just found it unnecessary and detracted from what was a really well done episode. We are subjected to someone autopsying themself, slashing of throats, piercing of eyes. I for one find it much better to let the imagination fill in the visuals using sound effects and insinuations. In addition to the gore, the episode does not show the lead as a bad or evil man in any way. He is a good and decent person who gets more than he bargained for.
Although I do feel that the production was tainted by the overuse of gore, I still found it a compelling episode and enjoyed the storytelling and the performances. Written by David S. Goyer and based on a 1980 short story by Michael Shea which was nominated for both a Hugo Award and a Nebula Award (both are prestigious literary awards for science fiction writing). The episode was directed by David Prior and aside from the afore mentioned gore, the episode was well produces with some great aesthetics using light and shadow, as well as camera angles and some realistic special effects.
I did like the episode, but felt that near the end the emphasis shifted from good storytelling to shock value by showing a lot of blood and guts.
Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities: The Autopsy
- Writing - 9/109/10
- Storyline - 9/109/10
- Acting - 10/1010/10
- Music - 10/1010/10
- Production - 8/108/10
User Review( votes)
Hi thanks for you review… But I disagree when. You say it would just be needed sounds effects when the lead is piercing himself… The point was and if you pay attention that parts doy have sound because the alien didn’t have a sensorial system for its own, so he could see or hear what the lead was doing, until he was inside him…. I think that was very cool showing us that the alien wasn’t as smart as ut thought.