Thursday, November 02, 2006

SLITHER

SlitherNathan Fillion Directed by James Gunn
Reviewed by Byron Merritt


THUMBS UP!

THUMBS UP FILM REVIEW RATING!

Feel something slimy crawling up your back? Don’t scream! It wants to get into your mouth and take over your body. These reddish slug-like creatures crash landed in a small grove near a hick town in the U.S. and, unfortunately, Chief of Police Bill Pardy (Nathan Fillion, SERENITY) didn’t notice right away. The meteorite carrying these interstellar parasites lands right behind his police car one night.

Bill Pardy is too occupied with his infatuation for Starla (Elizabeth Banks, THE 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN), a woman now married to a wealthy townsman named Grant (Michael Rooker, DAYS OF THUNDER). Pardy pines away for Starla, but he’s soon forced to deal with something far more important: saving the Earth.

Starla’s husband, Grant, is "infected" by the first of these creatures and begins changing both mentally and physically. He needs meat. Any kind of meat. Dog. Possum. Cow. Human. He must grow. And he does grow ...into a hideous human-slug hybrid that has to find a mate that’ll give birth to thousands more of the slug invaders. He finally meets up with an unfortunate soul and "impregnates" her then locks her away in a barn, feeding her local varments and making her grow to unheard of pregnant proportions.

Once Grant’s impregnated human "pops", the slugs rapidly travel through the countryside, looking for humans. Once they catch up with them, the slugs enter through their mouths and take over the human host, thus turning them into a sort of zombie starving for meat.

Bill Pardy must destroy the main creature, Grant, before he’s able to take over the entire town. All of the little slugs are now a smaller piece of Grant’s consciousness and he sees whatever one of his little sluggers sees, giving him millions of eyes and perspectives.


That James Gunn (screenwriter for DAWN OF THE DEAD, 2004) did SLITHER is no big surprise. His zombie-esque, interstellar, slug-infested hometown citizens ring familiar with a sort of INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS theme.

Nathan Fillion does an outstanding job as the calm yet determined police chief. That he delivers some excellent comedic lines in the midst of terrible events only added an extra punch to the story ("We’ll just say that I saved you instead of the other way around, okay?")

Special gore effects are carried out perfectly by Joe Colwell as we see Michael Rooker go through his disgusting transformation, and watch the slugs forcibly enter a multitude of mouths. Gross!

The one major flaw with the film is that it simply isn’t that original. Parallels to the aforementioned Invasion of the Body Snatchers and Dawn of the Dead are easily apparent. But the characters are excellent and the script strong. Fierce dialogue mixed with dark humor keep the story moving at a great pace (the entire film is only 95 minutes).


Slither is frightfully fun. For those who enjoyed SHAUN OF THE DEAD, you might want to check out this flick.

Click here for the Slither movie trailer!

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