Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Movie Review: Kingdom of the Spiders

I got interested in this gem from Trick or Treat Pete's recent post about nature-related movies and the still from Kingdom of the Spiders looked cool. And lo and behold, as I'm perusing through my video store the other day, what DVD do I see? What, you need me to tell you? Okay, it was KINGDOM OF THE SPIDERS - in the new release section, I might add. Out for the first time on DVD I'm guessing?

Now, I love the movie Arachnophobia, but obviously it still gives me the willies. Holy fucking crap, Kingdom of the Spiders was about a thousand times worse than Arachnophobia. A) Tarantulas are fucking big and hairy and scary and B) THERE WERE A WHOLE FUCKING LOT OF THEM. Okay, here we go.

Plot paragraph: So William Shatner is Dr. Robert "Rack" Hansen, a vet in this tiny town in Arizona. When a local farmer's calf gets sick, he sends off some samples of stuff to the university in one of those big towns in Arizona. A really hot bug scientist (Tiffany Bolling as Diane Ashley) shows up and tells him that the calf was poisoned by spider venom. The theory is that many spiders were the aggressors and not just one, which is confirmed by the discovery of a huge spider hill containing thousands of tarantulas. And as the spider population in Camp Verde grows, the human population diminishes...

I can't believe how many actors they got that agreed to have 20 spiders - no, no, not just spiders, TARANTULAS - crawling all over them. I mean look at this:

and this...

and these two dead dudes...

and the dead sheriff...   (OMFG, there's a huge one right over his EYE)

and this extremely brave actress...

and even this fat guy...

I mean, there's no end to the little bastards! Plus we have little girls on a bed covered with spiders; spiders falling on people's heads from an AC vent; spiders in the truck; spiders on a hill; spiders on somebody's hand - this whole GD movie is just freaking covered with spiders! And that one hot bug scientist chick just kept picking up the spiders like they were little fluffy bunnies or something and I kept screaming in my head, You fucking crazy bitch, put that thing down! What the hell are you doing?! My mother came in while I was watching this and I must have looked like a scared little kid or something because she said, "What are you watching?" To which I replied, much like a scared little kid, "I DON'T LIKE THIS MOVIE!" 

Actually, I did like the movie, obviously I just don't like spiders. Well, I don't mind spiders - I can usually take one on by myself if it shows up in my house but if I were in this movie? No way, Josie. I'd be a wreck. When they're crawling over people in the movie, those ain't no CG spiders. They were the real deal, so I guess I have to give a pat on the back to pretty much everyone involved in making this movie for being able to stand being surrounded by spiders every day they went to work. Some of them must have been really desperate to meet William Shatner.

Who could resist this hunk of burning love?

Entomologist Diane Ashley actually falls for Rack and his good ole boy cowboy attitude, despite his making fun of her in an earlier scene at the gas station and his initial disbelief in her killer spider theory. I'm always amazed in these kinds of movies how quickly people seem to "fall in love" with strangers they just met. But the love story in this movie is cut short by the invading hoard of spiders. Oh, what might have been.

The environmental stand they took was funny. We all know now that DDT sucks, but this movie seems like they were saying, "Look what could have happened, you dipshits. Don't fuck with nature." And the ending was absolutely hilarious. Billy Shatner looks out the window after somehow surviving the night in the lodge spider-free, only to see that the entire town is covered in spider's webs! Brilliant. Let's see you get out of this one, Captain Kirk.

Other things that are awesome about Kingdom of the Spiders: a pilot with spiders on his head screams like a girl as he tries to cropdust the sons-of-bitches out of town and then crashes his plane; the scene where pretty much everyone in town dies; and the actors playing Mr. and Mrs. Colby (the farmer with the first sick cow) are kind of amazing.

Two thumbs up... though I don't know if I want to watch it again...


  1. yeah, this one actually rocks. Highly entertaining with a surprisingly good Shatner, lots of spiders and an indeed terrific ending. love it!

  2. Heh, anything with Shatner is worth watching in my book....
    Good review!

  3. jervaise brooke hamsterAugust 31, 2010 at 5:32 PM

    Superb reveiw, now dare you watch the 1975 cult item "THE GIANT SPIDER INVASION" !?!?, and lets not forget the much more recent movie "EIGHT LEGGED FREAKS" its quite superb.

  4. Eight Legged Freaks is one of the greatest movies ever.

  5. I'm not really fond of any movies that have to do with spiders cause it makes my skin crawl. Haha! Arachnophobia is still pretty good. Great review girl!

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  7. Spock...I'm....covered in spiders....
    Dreaded Dreams
    Petunia Scareum

  8. I love, love, LOVE this movie and I think Mr. Shatner is quite hot in it too! There, I said it. Also, Tiffany Bolling is the pinnacle of awesomeness. She wears driving gloves. How cool is that!

    Glad you liked the movie. I love it, but hate watching towards the end when you can see some real spiders being run over and stuff. It upsets me. I'm not a spider lover or anything, but to die for one's art seems a little over the top!

    Great review!

  9. KHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Oh no...it's...a bunch of...spiders. I...was...........mistaken.

    Terrible, I apologize.

  10. Recently got a new breath of life thanks to RiffTrax. Hilarious stuff, helps ease the tension for those who have a fear of spiders.