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The Dentist (1996)

 
 

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3 times a day, no candy - Alan

Corbin Bernsen and Christa Sauls in The Dentist (1996)

Dr. Alan Feinstone (Corbin Bernsen) has worked hard to achieve everything he has including a dental practice which tries to make a visit to the dentists as painless as possible. That is until Feinstone catches his wife, Brooke (Linda Hoffman), sleeping with the pool cleaner who in turn is also sleeping with the neighbour. Already an obsessive character the thought of his wife cheating on him pushes Alan over the edge as he sees decay everywhere he looks and he can't stop himself from taking his issues out on his patients and staff.

Going to the dentist is always an uncomfortable experience and trust me if you are not a fan of the dentists I suggest avoiding "The Dentist", a horror movie from 1996, because it might give you nightmares. From the noise of the drill, the almost sadistic like prodding with a dental probe as well as what goes on when they knock you out with gas it is likely to make you even more afraid to attend your appointment.

Linda Hoffman in The Dentist (1996)

But "The Dentist" whilst using the natural horror of a visit to the dentist and the sound of the drill to scare you is more than that as it is more of a black comedy as we watch Feinstone becoming increasingly plagued by paranoia. Not only does he see the stench of decay everywhere but he struggles just as much with visions of his wife in a sexual way leading to a huge horror moment involving an attractive woman in the dentist's chair. On that note there is also a before he was famous Mark Ruffalo in "The Dentist" which is amusing in an over the top sort of way.

Now all this builds to the first of a series of horror scenes as Alan has Brooke meet him at the surgery where he decides to exact his revenge or should that be extract his revenge. I will leave it there other than to say even if you don't have a phobia of the dentists this scene may cause you to have one and each subsequent horror scene will make it worse. But all of this allows for Corbin Bernsen to explore his comical dark side and he does it brilliantly in an Italian opera inspired dental room which would give me nightmares with its old looking equipment.

What this all boils down to is that "The Dentist" is curious but the sort of curious which you can't stop watching. From the over the top nature of Feinstone's paranoia to the sex scenes and especially the horror of a psycho dentist. On that note if you are afraid of dentists or your dentist looks like Corbin Bernsen from the mid 90s I would suggest giving this a miss.

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