Sunday, November 27, 2011

Attack of the Giant Leeches (2008)

In Bill Gibron's review of this movie, he mentions that Gene Siskel had a good point: why remake good movies when there's plenty of not particularly great ones that could benefit from a remake? Why bother remaking "Halloween", "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" or "The Wicker Man" when they are perfect as they are? Why not remake "Lair of the Minotaur" or in this case, "Attack of the Giant Leeches"? The original is watchable, but it's far from a classic, and remaking it makes sense. So who decided to take this on? Brett Kelly, a micro-budget wunderkin whose garnered a small following for his nearly budget-free films.

The plot is somewhat similar to the original, or at least in spirit. When people from a swamp town begin to turn up missing, a local sheriff begins to investigate. Someone says they saw giant leeches, so Bucky turns to a difficult park ranger, whose also having an affair with his ex-girlfriend. Soon, more people start to turn up missing...

Kelly could have gone two ways with this-he could have made a straight up homage to the original, or he could have gone the splatter-comedy route. Instead, he makes a direct, 21st century style update, only without anything that's memorable or interesting. The problems? Well for one thing, the audio and video quality resemble that of a Youtube video. I know this was made for next to nothing, but it all looks mostly like Kelly didn't put a whole lot of effort into it. The characters are dull, lacking anything that would make the viewer interested in the final product-hell, the original at least had Yvette Vickers. Then there's the leeches themselves. Sure, they look slightly better than the ones from the original, but that's not saying a whole lot. In fact, I prefer the original's "men in industrial sized trash bags with suckers attached to them." They at least had a campy appeal.

That's the movies biggest flaw-there's little if anything in it that's appealing. Sure, there's girls in bikinis and lingerie, but while that would appeal to audiences of the pre-grindhouse exploitation market, but this was made in 2008-it takes a little more than that to make your movie work. What we get instead is something lacking anything resembling wit or charm. It's a movie that's ultimately lifeless.

As it stands, even fans of micro-budget horror movies will find this to be sorely lacking. If you're going to see one movie about giant leeches-watch the original "Attack of the Giant Leeches." At least you won't feel like falling asleep.

Rating: 1/10

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