★★★★☆ Canada / UK / Japan. 1h55m. Drama. Directed by David Cronenberg. Written by David Cronenberg (screenplay) and William S. Burroughs (“Naked Lunch”). Cinematography by Peter Suschitzky. Edited by Ronald Sanders. Music by Howard Shore, Ornette Coleman. Starring Peter Weller, Judy Davis, Ian Holm, Julian Sands, Roy Scheider, Monique Mercure, Nicholas Campbell, Michael Zeiniker, Robert A. Silverman.
William Lee is an exterminator who finds that his wife Joan is stealing his supply of insecticide to use as a recreational drug. Lee is arrested by the police, and he begins hallucinating as a result of exposure to the insecticide. Lee comes to believe that he is a secret agent, and his boss, a giant talking beetle, assigns him the mission of killing Joan, who is allegedly an agent of an organization called Interzone Incorporated.
An adaptation of William S. Burroughs’ 1959 novel of the same name. A box office bomb, garnering only $2.6 million out of a $17–18 million budget due to a limited release. Has since become a cult film, acclaimed for its surrealistic visual and thematic elements.