Wednesday, August 13, 2014

MR James Gunn's SLITHER

Since I already reviewed SUPER, and to celebrate the release of the Guardians of the Galaxy (finally the movie is out over here, I'm gonna see it tomorrow!!), I would like to take this occasion to have a look back at James Gunn's directional debut, Slither!

Movie: SLITHER aka Slither (2006) or James Gunn's Slither
Directed by James Gunn 
Release date 2006
Genre Science-fiction/creature feature/B-movie/horror comedy
Country USA

Written and directed by James Gunn, Slither was his first proper debut film on directing duties.

Gunn began first a career in music, he's always been into new wave and alternative rock (which he continues to occasionally compose for some of his films every now and then). In 1995 he then joined the low-budget horror company Troma, where he learned the filmaking trade through several of its fields. He wrote several screenplays with his mentor Lloyd Kaufman, co-founder of Troma. He learned there the various techniques of directing and producing, and was even involved in the making of cover art for their films.

The first real "big" project he wrote was the independent film Tromeo and Juliet in 1996, which he also helped direct as assistant director. He continued to contribute on several Troma films for a while. Finally he wrote, produced and performed in The Specials in 2000. His first major Hollywood project would be writing the original screenplay of Scooby-Doo in 2002, quickly followed by writing for the really well received remake of Dawn of the Dead in 2004 (in my own opinion, this was all due to Gunn and not Zack Snyder).

Slither was his directional debut, and what better thing to do than an horror comedy film, a loving tribute to old monster features (think The Blob or Tremors, and the like) and 1980s horror B-movies.

The film stars Nathan Fillion (of Firefly fame), the always lovely Elizabeth Banks, Gregg Henry and the fantastic Michael Rooker in the major roles.

It is sort of similar in tone and spirit to the 1985 horror comedy cult Night of the Creeps (some almost going as far as calling it an unofficial remake).

The story takes place in South Carolina.

One time a meteorite crashed in the woods nearby to the little town of Wheesly. It was infested by a sentient alien parasite!!

We meet this a car dealer named Grant Grant. Grant Grant finds these slug-things as he was hiding in the woods with this woman. Grant gets infected... The "thing" starts taking over his consciousness and body slowly....

Grant begins changing through the film into this tentacled-creature.

Animals start disappearing in town.

Grant's wife, Starla, notices Grant's strange behavior... It's "just a bee sting" he says...

She contacts her friend and local police officer Bill Pardy (Nathan Fillion). Bill always had this crush on her...

Grant affects his mistress Brenda, he hides her in a barn. She is going to give him alien offsprings to spread the disease! Brend is turned into this massively obese grotesque creature to produce more slug-worms!

The police finds her ... only it's already too late! She EXPLOOOODES! Spreading all the slug creatures and infecting everyone left in town!

Everybody is turned into "Grant's" puppets! They are one!

The entire town is slowing absorbed into one single monster.

Besides Starla and Bill, there is now only left a teenager, Kylie (Tania Saulnier), and the mayor Jack MacReady.

We find out apparently this alien goes from one planet to another, infecting and absorbing all life on his path.

Some of Grant's memories still remain intact, such as his love for his wife Starla. All the infected fuse into one giant finale monster! Our heroes have to put a stop to this infection for good!

Slither is a really fun loving tribute to all the late 1970s gory horror films and 1980s B-movies, such as the work of John Carpenter, David Cronenberg or also Fred Dekker..

The worms in this film are basically those from David Cronenberg's film Shivers (notice the similar title!).

The film also has several Troma references (including a short appearance by the co-founder Lloyd Kaufman), such as a short clip of The Toxic Avenger.

Nathan Fillion always has fun with these sort of wise-cracking authority figure heroes put in charge due to the situations. And he's a wonderful lead here. Elizabeth Banks is always fun, visible really having fun here. A lot of comedy come from these two playing their roles straight, like most of Nathan Fillion's delivery and lines. Also let's not forget the fantastic creepy performance Michael Rooker here. And James Gunn then-wife at the time Jenna Fischer also gets a small role as secretary no less (ha!)

A great deal of attention was paid to the music, sound effects and the visual. As such the film uses plenty of old school technique, so to have as many practical effects as possible, James Gunn only using CGi effect to help out smooth things in the corners instead of the usual "in your face attitude" of big budget films nowadays.

While the overall story is nothing new really, it's such a fun film!

Plenty of gore. Great acting. And great production values. The film is full of fun one liners.

The music composed by Tyler Bates is pretty good as well. (it reminded me of several classic horror films, such as Alan Silvestri's Predator!)

While the movie didn't make that great nor was neither well received at the time, it has since become a huge cult favorite. Slither is a genuinely fun, good and well made horror comedy film. Like I said, a loving tribute to the genre and intelligent. Really enjoyable.

Slither has a bit of comedy, a bit of horror, a bit of zombies (!), and even a bit of romance in it! There's something for everyone to enjoy in there!

Overall, Slither is a really fun impressive "little" film. Sure to please long time old school horror fans no doubt. Easily more so than most usual productions Hollywood puts out nowadays.

Very reminiscent of old school 80s horror comedies.

It's a cult classic!

Easily one of the best horror comedy films of all time in my eyes! It feels like a great pastiche of the genre such as The Blob, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Night of the Living Dead, etc. With plenty of laughs to boot!

Very enjoyable and very solid execution. Highly Recommended!

I give it:
2.5 / 3 Necronomicons!

No comments:

Post a Comment