Directed by: James Gunn
RUNNING TIME- 95 minutes
Starring: Nathan Fillion, Elizabeth Banks, Michael Rooker, and Gregg Henry
A small town is taken over by an alien plague, turning residents into zombies and all forms of mutant monsters.
Slither, directed by James Gunn (Dawn Of The Dead 2004) finally has made it to DVD and was worth the wait. The film, though much hyped, did unexpectedly poor at the box office. Guess the world wasn’t ready for the world’s first slug/alien/zombie film, or didn’t know what to expect from the previews; horror or comedy. You get lots of horror with a little humor thrown in.
In a small town in somewhere USA, a small meteor (see “The Blob”) falls to Earth. Inside is an alien organism that has survived billions of years. A drunken Grant Grant (yes his real name in the film played by Michael Rooker) finds it in the woods on his way home from a night of drinking. Just like “The Blob”, he goes up to it (the organism is out of the shell now and is slithering up the path) and the back of it cracks open. Does Grant move? run? of course not. He is speared by a sharp dart-like object projected from the organism’s back.
Grant then starts to look….different, very different. He first goes to an old girlfriend’s house and, with two long sharp squid-like arms coming from his chest, pushes them in, graphically, her belly-button. She is now the egg host for the “invasion”.
Meanwhile his wife (Banks) and the newly elected Sheriff (Fillion) try tracking him down, but instead find the woman in a barn (and as big as one) and get to watch her explode with thousands of slugs pouring out and jumping into the mouths of most of the deputies with him. Once the parasite gets into you, you are turned into a zombie, but all the organisms are one; Grant. Each zombie speaks to the wife just as her husband would.
What follows is one gooey, slithering, dripping, horrifying scene after another as the town is taken over. From adults to young children, the town’s population is graphically shown being “invaded”. By this time Grant has turned into a multi-tentacle, indescribably horrendous blob, and tries to seduce his wife to keep her.
This film is not for those who dislike oozing, slug-like giantmonsters. Horror fans will be very pleased as Director Gunn pulls off his second masterpiece in two years, proving he just isn’t good at remaking classics.
The one negative, and a big one, is the mis-use of Gregg Henry. He played the role of Val Resnick along side Mel Gibson in Payback (1999) (hubba hubba hubba). Here he plays the Mayor of this small town, but has nothing funny to say. He dialog just makes him appear as an ass, an unfunny one at that. A terrible waste of a great character actor.