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Tarantulas: The Deadly Cargo (1977)

An airplane carring coffee beans from South America has some unpleasant stowaways: a hoard of tarantulas which overcome the pilots as the airplane is flying over an orange-producing town in... See full summary »

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Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Bert Springer
Charles Frank ...
Joe Harmon
Deborah Winters ...
Cindy Beck
...
Mayor Douglas
Sandy McPeak ...
Chief Beasley
...
Doc Hodgins
...
Buddy
...
Fred
John Harkins ...
Sylvan
Charles Siebert ...
Rich Finley
...
Gloria Beasley
Edwin Owens ...
Frank
Alex Colon ...
Hector
Lanny Horn ...
Harry Weed
Jerome Guardino ...
H.L. Williams
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Storyline

An airplane carring coffee beans from South America has some unpleasant stowaways: a hoard of tarantulas which overcome the pilots as the airplane is flying over an orange-producing town in California. The airplane crashes, and the unlucky inhabitants of the town release the poisonous spiders into their midst. Once the town's officials discover that the tarantulas are responsible for several deaths, the tarantulas have already descended upon the town's only orange-processing factory. The town's citizens risk their lives to remove the tarantulas from the factory while the poisonous pests are rendered motionless by the transmitted sound of buzzing bees. Written by Kevin McCorry <mmccorry@nb.sympatico.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Its unknown cargo: hundreds of deadly tarantulas. See more »

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Horror | Thriller

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Release Date:

28 December 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Carga mortal  »

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1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Californian oranges, Ecuadorian coffee beans and BIG hairy spiders!
22 October 2007 | by (the Draconian Swamp of Unholy Souls) – See all my reviews

Possibly one of the best and most suspenseful made-for-TV creature-feature flicks accomplished during the 70's decade, "The Deadly Cargo" nearly equals the menacing atmosphere of classic and more famous spider films like "Kingdom of the Spiders" and "Arachnophobia". Of course, you shouldn't expect a bloodbath, partly because it's a TV-production and partly because… well, tarantulas aren't exactly capable of tearing people to pieces. But hey, at least the suspense is constant and the plot moves forward at a satisfying pace. Two sleazy coffee smugglers, one of them being Tom Atkins of "Night of the Creeps" and "Maniac Cop", fly a cargo full of Ecuadorian coffee beans and political fugitives towards California and through a thunderstorm. The cargo is infested with "Banana Spiders"; the deadliest kind of tarantulas in the world. With the plane severely damaged by the storm and the pilot wounded, it crashes down in the fields surrounding the orange-producing & exporting town of Finleyville. The spiders escape, all hell breaks loose and pretty soon the entire town lives in a state of hysteria. The script is solidly penned down, partly courtesy of Guerdon Trueblood (director of 70's favorite "The Candy Snatchers") and Stuart Hagmann's direction is surefooted. At least during the first half, the plot contains a few surprising shock-elements and unlikely victims (that'll teach them to poke animals with sticks!) The second half is very muddled and particularly the unexciting climax is a letdown. Overall a decent film that deserves a slightly better rating around here.


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