Review: Camel Spiders (15) / Director: Jim Wynorski / Screenplay: Jim Wynorski, J. Brad Wilke / Starring: Brian Krause, C. Thomas Howell, GiGi Erneta/ Release Date: April 9th
Camel Spiders makes Manos: The Hands of Fate look like Citizen Kane.
The plot (if you can call it that) concerns a group of soldiers involved in an enemy firefight in Afghanistan when a swarm of camel spiders attack, devouring what's left of the hostile force. One American soldier is killed during the skirmish and a baby camel spider crawls into his mouth thus creating the catalyst of the film. Captain Sturges (Brian Krause) and Private Reba (GiGi Erneta) are in charge of escorting the dead soldier's body back to Arizona to be given a proper burial when an accident occurs in the truck they're driving and the soldier's coffin breaks open releasing hundreds of camel spiders into the desert. It's not long before the spiders grow rapidly along with their voracious appetite attacking the local townspeople at a diner and hotel as Sheriff Beaumont (C. Thomas Howell), Sturges, Reba, a professor and his students band together taking refuge in an abandoned factory to prepare to make their final stand to face the onslaught of the creatures.
This movie fails on every level and is a total train wreck. Poorly directed by Jim Wynorski (gee, what a surprise there!) and terribly written with horrendous dialogue by J. Brad Wilke who obviously watched Arachnophobia, Eight Legged Freaks and Assault on Precinct 13 for inspiration the night before.
Filmed partially in Indiana and in the California desert (two areas which don't even remotely look the same; so much for continuity!) on a budget of $500,000 (though it was rumored more like $175,000) the characters come off clichéd and weak. There's no pathos to any of them and attempts to make them likeable fall flat, resulting in audiences not caring who dies next. Also, for fairly intelligent people, our heroes sure are stupid to be caught in their various situations when they die. The film soon becomes a bargain basement Ten Little Indians story with a weak payoff at the end. CGI FX are at least passable, but seemed rushed for what amount of money was spent on them.
Recently, it was announced that sleaze-meister Wynorski was going to film a remake of the 1957 cult flick, The Giant Gila Monster and Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (both public domain films). I can see the pitch meeting now: "Hey, I have an idea! Let's make a bad film from a bad film! The public will love it!". One thing to be said about Wynorski - at least he's consistent in creating these cinematic bowel movements.
Avoid this movie like you would a plague of camel spiders themselves.
Expected rating: 5 out of 10