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Eight Legged Freaks

movie reviewmovie reviewvideo review out of 4

All-Reviews.com Movie Review: Eight Legged Freaks

Starring: David Arquette, Kari Wuhrer
Director: Ellory Elkayem
Rated: PG-13
RunTime: 99 Minutes
Release Date: July 2002
Genres: Comedy, Horror


*Also starring: Scarlett Johansson, Scott Terra, Doug E. Doug, Leon Rippy, Rick Overton, Eileen Ryan



Review by Steve Rhodes
3 stars out of 4

Ellory Elkayem's EIGHT LEGGED FREAKS is a silly and fun B-movie that's best when it's the most ridiculous.

Here's an original idea for a motion picture. What if insects ingested toxic waste? What if those insects were a tasty bunch of crickets, the favorite food of spiders? Think those spiders might grow really big, really fast? Well, that's exactly what happens in the ironically named town of Prosperity, Arizona. Soon the spiders are munching on the locals, eating them like, well, flies. The insects are so big that the mayor has to ask what they are exactly. One of the citizens replies, "A spider, man." The movie never takes itself, or other movies ten times its box office size, seriously.

Although they aren't exactly all A-list stars, the cast does themselves proud and aren't afraid of looking stupid in the service of their comedy. Young Scott Terra, a Harry Potter look-alike, plays Mike Parker, the local brainiac who knows all there is to know about arachnids. Kari Wuhrer plays his single mom and the town's sheriff. Scarlett Johansson (GHOST WORLD) plays his sister, a slightly rebellious but still virginal teen. David Arquette plays Chris McCormack, the son of the owner of an inactive gold mine. Chris is a painfully shy guy who has always had a crush on Mike's mom. And Doug E. Doug plays a rebel radio operator. His outlaw station features non-stop warnings about government conspiracies and alien attacks.

Once the spiders get into their nocturnal feeding frenzy, it's "Arac Attack!" time, which was the working title for the picture. Although not as much fun or as exhilarating as REIGN OF FIRE, EIGHT LEGGED FREAKS is a treat. But too much of it can go a long way. Trimmed down by ten or fifteen minutes the length would have been just about right. If you have any fear of spiders, however, don't even think about checking out this film. The special effects are crude but quite memorable.

EIGHT LEGGED FREAKS runs 1:39. It is rated PG-13 for "sci-fi violence, brief sexuality and language" and would be acceptable for kids around 11 and up.

My son Jeffrey, age 13, gave it ***, saying that it was "hokey fun." He commented that the special effects were good but not too good, which was perfect for a parody.

Copyright 2002 Steve Rhodes

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