Scanners is also helped by a strong cast, especially the "bad guy" Darryl Revok, played by Michael Ironside [Total Recall, Top Gun] who imbues the character with a double helping of creepy and a side of menace. It's a classic performance and Ironside's villiains are always a delight to watch. My other favorite character was Dr. Paul Ruth who tries to stop the bad guy by sending in another talented scanner to bring him down. Patrick McGoohan [Braveheart, Escape From Alcatraz] gives the doctor a weird, off-kilter vibe that is perfect for a Cronenberg film. It's a subtle but commanding performance which is a difficult thing to do.
The special effects in Scanners are also fun. Granted, they're not the most skilled effects but they made me laugh and even wince occasionally. The exploding head toward the beginning of the film was priceless and the final battle scene was epically strange and creative. Love it!
In light of some of the really crappy 80's movies that came out in the early years of that decade, Scanners stand tall above them all. Do not miss this one.
For more info check out the film's entry in IMDB.