Movie of the Day – Critters
October 18, 2012 22 Comments
If those Gremlin things went up against the creatures from Critters, I would go with Critters every time. This is just an insane movie, cheesy, but insane and fun to watch. I have to really give it up to the USA network during the early 90s cause they just played the hell out of these b-movie classic and Critters, along with all of its sequels, were shown on constant rotation. The quintessential step-brother to Gremlins, I think this movie is just kickass. Little furry balls of death that devour anything in their path. That poor, unsuspecting and typical horror movie setting mid-western town doesn’t know what’s about to come.
Critters, an amusing horror comedy directed byStephen Herek, is the story of a family menaced by eight basketball sized creatures from outer space who arrive at their Kansas farm in search of food. Helen Brown (Dee Wallace Stone) and Brad (Scott Grimes), owners of the farm find themselves held hostage as the creatures roll, jump and bounce around during the night. They are pursued by a pair of inept, intergalactic bounty hunters, Charlie (Don Keith Opper) and Johnny (Terrence Mann) who can shape-shift at will and are packing weapons capable of taking care of any creature they encounter. ~ Linda Rasmussen, Rovi
OK, the creatures are more or less a ripoff/homage/parody of the gremlins from the movie that came out two years before this movie. The little furball aliens even have their own little separate personalities, just like in Gremlins, but these little fur shits are far more terrifying with that Cheshire smile that shows off all their murderous teeth. The puppets and animatronics for the creatures are really good and unsettling as they just roll along and chomp away at some schlub that got caught by them. Seeing these whirling dervishes just devour and kill in a maniacally fun way is the best draw of this movie.
Critters has the lovely mean streak in its presentation. It knows what it is, a Gremlin ripoff, but it just takes the entire creature feature premise and runs with it. The characters all fit these folksy mid-western types with their “gee wiz” and tepid approach to the general cuteness of the critters before the recoil in horror at their actions. The acting is just what you expect, cheesy, campy and a rollicking good time to enjoy. The real reason to watch the movie is for the critters and the decent special effects of the movie. The kills are just perfect with a lot of devouring and wonderful blood spray when the critter just attack like a group of piranhas.
Creature features are really one of my favorite things about horror movies and Critters definitely filled that cheesy niche. You can’t help but love the overall campy aspect of a Gremlins clone, but this movie has a much meaner streak to the proceedings. It might not have the whimsy and charm of Gremlins with their lovable Gizmo, but Critters just wants to fuck shit up and eat everything in its path. Absolute fun and a great little throwback to the whole creature movies!