Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Giant Spider Invasion (1975)

THE GIANT SPIDER INVASION directed by Bill Rebane

Ranked 2.8/10 on IMDB

Warning: Spoilers!
--does anyone truly care?

Quick Synopsis:

Talon: Directed by Bill Rebane, produced by three people, and written by two people. They should be thankful that I don't mention their names because this movie had me hovering a razor above my wrist the entire running time.

Joe: I actually cut myself. Twice.

Talon: Main cast include:

Steve Brodie as Dr. J.R. Vance.

Barbara Hale as Dr. Jenny Langer.

These two are quintessential scientists. They're the ones guiding the audience with their complex chemistry formulas and advanced theologies of physics.

Not really.

Alan Hale, Jr as Sheriff Jones. People know him from the sitcom, GILLIGAN'S ISLAND. No relation to Barbara Hale.

Leslie Parrish as Ev Kester.

Bill Williams as Dutch.

I believe that these two are husband and wife in the movie. Not even sure at this point.

Joe: They're brother and sister.

Or maybe father and daughter.

I'm not sure either.

Talon: And the most important role for the whole movie, Paul Bentzen, owner of the rock shop.

That guy rocks.

Joe: Every small town has a rock shop.

It's where the local kids get stoned.

Talon: With a 300 thousand dollar budget, the movie starts off strong with a blue smudge from outer space heading toward Earth. The beginning of the giant spider invasion!

We also see shots of a priest preaching about the end of the Earth, but I don't think that's relevant to the movie.

Joe: You can't say that! If you took out every scene in THE GIANT SPIDER INVASION that isn't relevant to the movie, the movie would be 38 seconds long.

Talon: After the comet lands a hundred feet behind Dutch's house, causing an explosion which the scientists claim is nuclear, Dutch avoids investigating it because he's tired and wants to go to bed. Which he's totally entitled to.

Joe: I felt the same way. We were only a few minutes into this and I wanted to go to bed too.

Talon: Ev, apparently an alcoholic, plays the role of nagging wife/sister/daughter, and keeps yapping about how a meteor landed in their backyard.

Joe: A meteor landed on our property! Nag, nag, nag.

Talon: Then the scientists ramble about science stuff like black holes, and radiation, and they also include endless stationary shots of Sheriff Jones on the phone.

This happens so much, that half the movie--and keep in mind its called THE GIANT SPIDER INVASION--half the freaking movie is Sheriff Jones on the phone. It's a double fail when I have not only listen to his dumb convos, but witness his hairy chest. Like what the hell kind of sheriff wears a shirt with more buttons off than on?

Joe: I know we exaggerate things for comic effect on this blog, but this movie literally has scenes of people talking on the phone for 350 minutes.

Talon: Then we're back to Dutch and Ev's home. They finally....

Oh my god. Imma take five. Describing these terrible movies is really taking a toll on my brain.

Joe: Push through the pain. Because beyond that pain... is more pain.

In the form of people talking on the phone.

Talon: So they investigate the freaking comet that landed in their spacious backyard and discover carcasses of cows, and strange looking rocks.

Ahh, yes. Strange-looking egg-shaped rocks. Let's take them home.

So they crack one open and it's filled with diamonds! They know it's a diamond because it cuts glass, which we are forced to watch. But just to be sure, Dutch decides to take it to Paul, the rock shop owner.

Man, that guy rocks.

Next morning I guess, or later on that day, I don't know, Dutch changed clothes, Ev is drinking vodka by the bottle. She claims there are spiders all over the house. I wonder why?

Maybe its a...

GIANT SPIDER INVASION?

Joe: Except these spiders are not giant.

All we've seen so far is eight seconds of spiders, and half an hour of people talking on the phone. They should call this movie THE GIANT PEOPLE TALKING ON THE PHONE INVASION. Or even better, THE GIANT WASTE OF TIME.

Talon: Dutch cleverly responds by saying she's hallucinating from the booze.

Right. I hate it when I get drunk and start seeing spiders. In fact... that should be a new DUI law!

Joe: "Have you been drinking?"

"No, officer."

"Are you seeing spiders?"

"Well..."

"You have the right to remain silent."

"Do I get a phone call? One that I can film for ninety and release in theaters under a misleading title?"

Talon: Screw a breathalyzer! The bartender can simply ask how many spiders you're seeing. Point zero eight is the legal spider-seeing limit in Illinois, but some states might be different. Always check your local spider-seeing laws on drinking and seeing spiders.

So Ev goes to bed, and there's those weird-looking rocks all around her room.

The scene is set up so bad, its like she's actually waiting for the director to tell her when the spider is crawling behind her. So she gets scared and runs to their tiny shack and gets attacked by a giant stuffed spider.

We don't see her the rest of the movie.

Poor Ev. Killed by an inanimate fuzzy object.

Meanwhile, Dutch, who's also named Dan I guess, meets up with Paul, the rock shop owner.

Man, that guy rocks.

They discuss how much his diamonds are worth, and it's not that much.

Joe: Riveting cinema. I was on the edge of my seat that whole scene, because I'd fallen asleep.

Talon: Back to the scientists.

Steve says, "Well it fits. Einstein's general theory of relativity."

Steve... Friend. Pal. Brother from another mother. We've known each other for how long? About fifty minutes into this movie, and you're talking about the structure of space-time?!

Steve, a freaking meteor smashed into Earth carrying giant spiders, which we haven't seen yet, and you wanna talk about how the speed of light is the same for all observers?

Well, Steve, I have to say, the last brain cell I had just disintegrated into nothing. All because of you. You feel good about that, Steve?

Joe: Which one was Steve? The rock guy? Or the farmer/father/brother/husband?

Talon: Later on, Dutch is planting his crops, and finally something awesome happens. It's what I've been waiting a whole hour for...

You ready?

An enormous spider, the size of a car with legs longer than street lamps, attacks and swallows him whole.

Joe: That was almost worth the previous hour of watching people talk on the phone.

Almost.

Talon: Next great spider scene is when Paul, the rock shop owner...

Joe: Man, that guy rocks.

Talon: ...is driving home and the giant spider lands on his car and begins punching him through the window.

Amazing.

Finally, the epic ending. The two scientists defeat the ginormous spider, cleverly destroying the spider's interdimemsional gateway by shooting a flare gun towards the sky.

Finding the spider's only weakness, the end result is zoomed-in shots of melting spider parts until the whole arachnid catches on fire and explodes.

Amazing.

Joe: That rock shop guy rocks.

First Impressions:

Talon: In spite of all the long phone conversations, the bad acting, the terrible plot and character development, the dumb science, and the limited time we saw the giant spider...

...this movie still sucks.

Joe: The giant spider, which was actually a Volkswagon covered in fake black fur, was a joy to behold. Whether it's worth sitting through the running time to see it in action depends on how high you are.

Talon: Put ISHTAR back in.

Joe: Put anything back in. Put a coaster int he DVD player, we'll watch that instead.

Talon: Just don't put ZAAT back in. That movie makes me want to cut off my arms and fall from a great height.

Joe: I hate ZAAT like I hate poverty and disease.

Talon: Here's some of the dialog my dad and I had while viewing. Try to imagine some of our phrases as catchy slogans:

"I've never seen a movie with more people talking on the phone."

"All small towns have a rock shop."

"The bush blew up the motorcycle."

"If they cut every scene with people talking on the phone, this movie would be eight minutes long."

"Is that his sister? Is Dutch trying to nail his sister?"

"Paul looks a lot like Charles Manson."
"Hey, don't talk about Paul like that. That guy rocks."

"Is that car a Dodge Dart?"
"No, its a hatch back."
"Oh."

"Is that a Dodge Dart?"
"No."
"Oh."

"Hey, I think that's a Dodge Dart."
"Oh my god."

"That giant spider is actually pretty cool."
"Is it? I ripped out my own eyes twenty minutes ago."

"I hate you, Dad."

Best Worst Scene

Talon: The spider sucking up Dutch like spaghetti.

Joe: That extended scene with the Sheriff talking on the phone.

Watch it? 

Talon: No. Waste your time doing something else. Like counting to ten thousand.

Joe: Yes. If only for the rock shop scene. But you'll need three espressos to stay awake, and three beers and a shot for the pain.

Share it? 

Talon: Only to the people who think counting to ten-thousand is fun.

Joe: Yes. I'm going to call all of my friends and tell them to watch this movie. And I'm going to film my phone calls and release that footage as a movie of its own.

Re-watch it? 

Talon: I'd watch the end again. Or the scenes where the spider attacks people.

Joe: Yes. This film is visual Xanax. Next time I'm having a panic attack, I can watch this to lull me into a stupor.

Talon: Did you see THE GIANT SPIDER INVASION? Do you have any best worst movies to recommend? Did this movie abolish your arachnophobia? Post in the comments!

TALON'S TWENTY SECOND FILM REVIEW!

Talon will now spout off five reasons you should watch the next movie we're blogging about, the astonishing JAWS: THE REVENGE!



MOVIES WE'VE REVIEWED

6 comments:

  1. I saw the Mystery Science Theater 3000 episode with this movie. Fun, terrible movie that left me feeling greasy. It also convinced me to never move to Wisconsin. You could also check out Shatner's Kingdom of the Spiders if you want to see a really awful spider movie. :)

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Kristy! I've searched your suggestion on Google and it looks like a great/bad movie to blog about! Hopefully my brain won't be mush by then...

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  2. Check out the poster -- the biggest spider, the one below the title, has ten legs. O_O The smaller spider, to the upper right, only has six. o_O Apparently in this giant space-spider society, smaller (lower status?) spiders have to donate some of their legs to the spider rulers. Why did no one in this movie examine the clearly fascinating cultural hierarchies of these spider-aliens??

    Or maybe whoever painted the poster has just never actually seen a spider...? :)

    Angie

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    Replies
    1. Wow, I've never noticed that, Angie.

      I'd go with the movie didn't have the budget to draw in two more spider legs. As for the giant ten-legged arachnid, I also believe limited funds was the problem. Definitely too much money to hire a "Spider Leg Counter" one of the most notable jobs in spider movies next to web designers. Wink-Wink. Also, if you look closely, the poster shows that the designer has never seen the movie. Only one giant spider attacked a carnival fair, not multiple in a city!

      Too funny.

      Delete
  3. I can't help but notice you got the Delux Collector's Edition. Pretty apt considering it'll be collecting dust like a boss. Or do they refer to the souls this movie collects when people watch it? Or maybe it includes deleted scenes (more phone shots).

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  4. It came with a soundtrack that couldn't be imported into iTunes because it wasn't recognized.

    Not coincidentally, I couldn't recognize the soundtrack either.

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