Saturday, May 4, 2013

Spiders (2013)

Tibor Takács is a name that's not particularly well known in horror. Granted, he did direct the 80's cult favorite "The Gate" and the underrated "I, Madman", but his other credits ("Mansquito", "The Gate 2" and many TV movies and episodes) don't exactly scream "master of horror." His latest is "Spiders", and watching it, I couldn't help but thing "It resembles a SyFy Channel movie with better production values that somehow got a tiny theatrical release." That and the fact it stars Patrick Muldoon, who was in Tibor's other giant spider movie "Ice Spiders."

A Soviet Union space station crashes into a subway in New York. To make things worse, the thing was also carrying a strain of deadly, continuously mutating spiders that begin to breed like rats and grow into enormous size. In the process, Jason (Muldoon) and his soon to be ex-wife Rachel (Charisma Carpenter) need to find their daughter, who is lost in the city. Plus, it seems that Col. Jenkins (William Hope) and Dr. Darnoff (Pete-Lee Wilson) aren't exactly up to good things.

As I mentioned, "Spiders" feels like a SyFy Channel movie with better production values. The effects, whilst not excellent, at least look better than the usual monsters from those movies, and once the queen comes into play, it actually gets kinda fun. Plus, there's some minor gore, and Muldoon and Carpenter are likeable enough in their roles.

Unfortunately, there's little else that really stands out. The rest of the cast is ho-hum at best, with Hope pretty much playing the same character he did in "Aliens" and Wilson is just another crazy scientist type who also doubles as a poor man's Udo Kier. The direction-well, it's not bad, but Tibor doesn't really do anything you haven't seen before all that well. It all just feels static. The biggest flaw though, it that the film takes itself too seriously. To make a movie like this-especially one with a PG-13 rating, you need to add something resembling wit and a tongue in cheek playfulness to the proceedings, as something like "Eight Legged Freaks" can attest. There's not a whole lot of that here, and it makes the whole movie feel nondescript instead of fun in a guilty pleasure manner.

At the end of the day, I can tell you that I didn't hate this, but that's because there's little here that's actually worthy of hatred. It's all just sort of there, without anything that's worthy of mention or enthusiasm. In short: "meh."

Rating: 4.5/10

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