Directed by Stephen Herek
Expectations: Fairly high. I’d wanted to see this since I was a little kid.
On the general scale:
On the B-movie scale:
I’ve seen parts of this over the years but had never seen it all the way through. I gave it a go, but this is definitely one that would be better with a bunch of friends. It’s a horror comedy and my sights were set a bit more towards gore-fest. The key flaw to my logic though is that I never bothered to notice that this was PG-13. That would have tempered my expectations quite a bit, instead of building them up over the last couple of decades.
Basically, the Critters (or Crites, if you want to get technical) make a daring escape from a prison asteroid, stealing a spaceship. A couple of shapeshifting bounty hunters head off in pursuit. The Crites land on Earth, rural Kansas to be exact. It’s been a long flight and their little Critter bellies are rumbling. From here it devolves into a slight clone of Hitchcock’s The Birds, if the birds were prison-breaking, meat-chomping little furballs from space. I loved the opening of the movie, even if it does focus on the family a little too much. As the film dragged on, my bloodlust raged. “When will the Crites start chomping the innocents?” I thought.
As I mentioned above, the film is PG-13, so you can pretty much forget about getting any quality gore shots. There’s a couple of okay ones, but nothing inventive or terribly special. I did enjoy one moment when a Crite bites a dude’s hand as he reaches for a boombox. It’s a shame there wasn’t more of these moments as the Critter’s razor-sharp, tooth-lined mouths are ripe for that kind of thing. The Critters do get some of the funniest moments of the film though. I don’t know what it is about non-humans speaking a native tongue with a subtitle of “Fuck!” but it gets me laughing every single time.