A movie with a B screenplay. You have to see Marlon Brando's first appearance to believe it. I've always believed that, for a movie lover, it's recommended if not sane to see such films once in a while. Because it makes you remember why you fell in love with cinema in the first place.
Anyone even attempting to view this as anything serious is in for a disapointment...seen as the camp classic that it is, it's hilarious, scary, outrageous, and brilliantly acted by both Brando and Kilmer
I am going to watch all of Val Kilmer's work because I'm worried about his health right now. I suggest a viewing of the making of doc to know why nothing makes sense. Montgomery never does finish that sentence about why he's even here. Is Brando even acting when beckons for more ice to fill his bucket hat. Kilmer and Brando compete in utterly mocking everything, and it's aesthetic and fascinating like an MGMT video.
The amount of hate Moreau receives is unwarranted. It never rises above Hollywood convention, but it's coherent, well-paced, & graced by Brando's batshit insane performance as the eponymous mad doctor (Kilmer is wacko too). There's even some thematic weight (though not much): the descent of the man-beasts into depravity is a crude assertion that man needs God to be civilized. Overall it suffices for shallow fun.
Such a weird dynamic (or lack thereof) when both Brando AND Kilmer try to mess up the film the best they can. Both are actually quite good & interesting, but the film itself is kind of a turd. I watched it again, after almost twenty years, for the heck of it, having just watched the great documentary "Lost Soul: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley's Island of Dr. Moreau". Watch the documentary, skip the main event.
One of the films that become more and more fascinating due to it's notorious behind-the-scenes problems and the firing of the original director Richard Stanley, but seen on it's own it's terrible. Uncaring actors, screenplay that has 1% in common with the H.G. Wells book and lousy editing mark this as one of the worst. Only Fairuza Balk come out out this with her honor intact.