STARRING: Don Thompson, Nathan Fillion,
Gregg Henry, Elizabeth Banks
2006, 96 Minutes, Directed by:
2006 sci-fi horror flick died an unfair dismal death at the box office (it made
a mere $7 million). Its fate on DVD doesn’t seem much fairer either. Perhaps it
wasn’t weird or off-beat enough to become a true cult item and its fate as “that
cool horror flick no-one saw” seems cemented. This is a pity, because it really
is a heck lot of fun . . .
Not that the movie is
The plot steals from all over the place. An alien
organism in a meteor crash-lands in the woods outside a small American town
(just like in the original 1950s The Blob). In true
Invaders from Mars-style the alien takes over a
local resident (Michael Rooker, Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer) and
thus begins plotting to take over the entire planet using icky-looking slug
creatures. It is up to a small town sheriff (Nathan Fillion, TV’s
Firefly) and the local resident’s wife
(Elizabeth Banks, The 40-Year-Old Virgin) to stop the alien invasion.
Along the way they have to cope with anything from mindless zombies like in
Night of the Living Dead to slimy creatures that
might as well have strolled in straight from John Carpenter’s
The Thing . . .
Yup, Slither steals from
all over the place. But it steals in style. A mordant sense of humor runs
through the proceedings and the movie is a genuine thrill ride. Horror comedy is
difficult, but Slither manages to balance the sly black-humored jokes
well with onscreen gross-out horror. (Note: it never steers into the sadistic
torture porn territory of the likes of SAW and Hostel though.) Why Nathan Fillion never became a major Hollywood star is one of Life’s
He is simply pitch perfect at the deadpan hero. It should come as no surprise
that Slither was written and directed by James Gunn, who also wrote the
screenplay for the 2004 Dawn of the Dead remake.
An underappreciated gem that
horror fans would appreciate. Rent or buy it today.