Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

How bad that can any movie that has Lloyd Kaufman showing up in cameo role be?  Those of us who know, know Lloyd of course.  He’s the mastermind behind cinematic classics such as Toxic Avenger, Class of Nuke ‘em High and his latest, ‘Poultrygeist:  Attack of the Chicken Zombies’.  I’m sensing comparisons to Citizen Kane already for that one.  This brings us to the Universal Studios release of ‘Slither’ written and directed by St. Louis native James Gunn (The St. Louis reference is relevant because I too am native to the ‘Lou’. GO CARDINALS).  Mr. Gunn, as it so happens, is a protégé of Mr. Kaufman.  This pretty much explains everything.


Taking place in a sleepy undisclosed nowhere town, I’m guessing Indiana somewhere, Slither begins its story with an alien slug that lands in the woods and begins searching for a host.  Town bigwig Grant Grant (Michael Rooker) ends up in said woods after a fight with his lovely wife Starla (Elizabeth Banks) and finds the big slug after following its slimy trail.  Now instead of going the other way or shooting it like any rational person NOT in a movie would do, he begins to poke it with a stick.  Mr. Slug opens up, shoots something in Grants’ belly changing him into the most horrible thing I’ve seen in recent filmdom in a while.  Grant soon pays a visit to the local tramp, impales her with two slimy tentacles where she incubates a couple hundred thousand of slimy slugs who enter through our mouths, lock onto our brains and turn us into flesh eating, acid spitting zombies.


I know… you’re thinking it’s just like the last ten slimy slug, oral entry, zombie, acid spitting movies you’ve just seen, but this one is… different.  Think ‘Shaun of the Dead’ meets slimy slugs and you begin to get a good feel for ‘Slither’.  Oh it’s a zombie horror movie all right, with slow moving decaying humans who for whatever

reason can’t be outrun, and more gore than any zombie-o-phile could ask for, but what sets this apart and thus makes it a hell of a good time at the movies is its humor.  Hardcore horror freaks might not go for it, but at no time does ‘Slither’ ever take itself too serious.  That’s not say it’s a parody, because it’s far from that, but when a man gets split in two, his tendrils spill to ground and you can laugh at it… we’re talking genius here people.  Further discussion about ‘Slither’ without mentioning Gregg Henry who plays Mayor MacReady would be criminal.  Mr. Henry is no movie star, but once you saw him you’d know him immediately because he’s one of those character actors who always in something.  His performance alone is worth the price of a ticket.  One of the truly fine comedic turns I have seen in a movie in a very long time.  And don’t let me short shrift the films star Nathan Fillion (from TV’s ‘FireFly) who as Chief of Police Pardy has the unenviable task of playing straight man to Gregg Henry’s Mayor MacReady and ringmaster to 2,000 slug infested zombies.  He too does an admirable job infused with witty humor as well.


Personally, I don’t think you could ask much more from a zombie slug acid spitting cinematic masterpiece than what you’re gonna get with Slither.  Slither 2?  Now that’s gonna suck.  I can’t wait.


Bud’s Second:  Wow, I went into this movie assuming the absolute worst: another mindless horror flick, full of senseless killing and bloodshed. I was asking myself “Don’t I have somewhere else I have to be?”  Shame on me.

Slither was terrific fun. I mean, the movie is what it is, with all the slithering-slug-critters and acid-spitting zombie stuff you could possibly handle. But what sets this film apart is the sense of humor it has, and the terrific performances from Nathan Fillion and Gregg Henry.

Mainstream-movie fans who aren't disturbed by the violence and other horror-movie elements of the movie should make it a point to check out this film. It's a big upside-surprise in my book.


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