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A disparate group are trapped on a remote island by a hurricane. On the island, a doctor works to make humans twice as small as we already are. This, apparently, will help prevent over population. Unfortunately, his experiments have also created some giant shrews. As the shrews run out of smaller animals to eat, they move in on the people in the house. Written by
Dan Whitehead <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This low budget feature is still regarded as one of the most successful "regional films." Unlike other regional films, it not only received national distribution, it also had some foreign sales. See more »
(at around 1 min) A shot shows "Rook" rowing his boat to shore accompanied by the sound of the approaching howling hurricane yet the water is absolutely calm. See more »
Having seen any number of bad movies, I can state that this is significantly better than most of them, and even better in part than movies not considered bad at all. However, in those aspects in which this movie is bad it is not merely bad, it is awful.
We have the usual formula of two-fisted hero (James Best), damsel in distress (Swedish Ingrid Goude), the damsel's mad-scientist father (non-Swedish Baruch Lumet), and the villain (Ken Curtis). The formula in this case is less clichéd than usual. The hero is fairly articulate and the mad scientist is actually quite urbane, tossing off his creation of hundreds of giant, poisonous, man-eating shrews with the line "unusual experiments lead to unusual results". The dialog is competently written and the acting is above par (with the exception of the Swedish eye-candy, who is at least good eye candy).
The general concept is compact and dramatically efficient: a group of people are trapped first by a hurricane and then by an outside menace in a stronghold which gets less and less strong as time, ammunition and group cohesion all grow short.
However the execution is at times illogical. One problem is that the stronghold is made out of...adobe. On a rainswept island crawling with usable timber? The thrilling conclusion is also somewhat implausible.
The main reason for the film's abysmal reputation is the legendary and quite obvious use of ordinary dogs in bathmats to play the part of giant shrews. I suppose this just has to be overlooked.
As a sidelight, it is interesting to see Dukes of Hazard sheriff James Best tall and handsome as the hero, and it is apparent that producer/villain Ken Curtis labored long and hard in the trenches before gaining fame as Festus.
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