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Cirio H. Santiago
A small lakeside resort community is beset by roaches. Big killer roaches that reproduce in dark moist places, and can grow to 10 feet long. The local sheriff may or may not be using them as part of his land-grab scheme. The locals eventually call in an over-the-top bug exterminator to relieve themselves of their problem. Written by
My wife can't stand Randy Quaid (except in ID4), and I'm beginning to come around to her point of view. Actually, though, he's the comedy highlight (sad but true) of this really weird rip-off of Arachnophobia. He plays the John Goodman character, except less seriously. His self-styled "bug commando" resembles nothing less than Wyle Coyote as he detonates a hand grenade on himself but is later "recovering nicely" by the end of the movie.
For extra fun, you can watch Star Trek vets George Takei and James Doohan humiliate themselves. If only they could have got Nichelle Nichols, Grace Lee Whitney, and Marina Sirtis, the cast of has-been Star Trek actors would have been complete.
Oh, the plot? Well, it's somewhat of a mess. There are these roaches (although sometimes they're worms and sometimes they're really big mosquitos
not for the screenwriters the hobgoblins of consistency and continuity!)
and they're overrunning a small lakeside community. There's no real explanation for this. The local sherriff (Doohan) seems to be in on this (he's taking advantage of the devalued property to buy up the land cheap), but maybe he isn't. Maybe he's being controlled by the "queen" roach. Maybe he isn't. It's hard to tell.
Essentially the bugs get inside human bodies and eat their way out after breeding within. The daughter of a local lodge owners is the heroine, inexplicably stalked by a Peeping Tom who preaches doom and despair (what he has to do with the movie's plot is never made clear either, although we do get to see her in near-naked once or twice).
Anyhoo, she becomes romantically involved with the local bad boy (who is being stalked by the local even badder girl, who meets a suitably gory end), and together they must try to defeat the roaches. A few more people die, including Takei's scientific character (poor George seems to have picked up William Shatner's acting style through osmosis - oh the humanity!), and Bernie Kopell and Anne Lockhart (in the middle of a sex scene - ugghhh!).
Our hapless heroes must call in General Merlin, Quaid in a remarkably low-budget role for him (he usually humiliates himself in much bigger films) as a military man turned bug exterminator. They eventually wander off, find the roaches lair, defeat the queen roach (after she finishes off a big slab of ham, i.e., James Doohan), and even though there's at least one other giant bug out there (the one that killed Takei's character), and the female scientist and the surviving deputy are making ominous "something is out there still" noises, the heroine drives off the end for a shock ending that will surprise absolutely no one.
The CGI of the giant queen roach isn't bad, but watching Quaid spar with the puppet version (complete with unconcealed wires) has to be seen to be believed. The rest of the movie is typical gross-out fodder. There seems to be a kind of tongue-in-cheek intent here, but that only works if the movie is funny. It isn't. Sorry.
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