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They Nest (2000)

PG-13 | | Sci-Fi, Horror | TV Movie 25 July 2000
1:13 | Trailer

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A Maine island becomes infested with lethal insects that root inside their victims, while a local doctor battles the bugs and incorrigible locals that don't believe him.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dr. Ben Cahill
Sheriff Hobbs
Jack Wald
Nell Bartle
Eamon Wald
Mark Schooley ...
Johnnie Skee
Travis MacDonald ...
Enoch Piper
Josiah Bean
Lee Jay Bamberry ...
Guy Barter
Sarah Barter (as Shaina Unger)
Marcel Maillard ...
Al Crump
Alexander Pollock ...
Henry S. Crump
Deb Pickman ...
Peggy Crump
Mrs. Bartle


Dr. Ben Cahill, a fine city doctor, gets so stressed by marital problems and alcohol that he freezes up under pressure in the emergency room. To get his act back together, he decides to unwind a few months in the house he and his ex bought on Orr island, an insignificant (former) fishermen place off the coast of Maine. He almost immediately becomes the butt of spite from a gang of local nobodies. After the doctor started examining, at the request of the reasonable sheriff Hobbs who leans to his side, some animal and human corpses with strange internal as well as external injuries, one of the brutes, not so handy handyman Jack Wald, has a fatal nocturnal accident crashing into Dr. Cahill's car. The doc observes one of the red cockroaches which recently infest the island has pincers, most unusual, reads up and contacts the university entomology department, where this African species isn't too well-known either. Jack's even dumber brother Eamon Wald uses violence which ends up causing ... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

island | maine | doctor | sheriff | house | See All (44) »


It's feeding time...


Sci-Fi | Horror

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for creature violence and peril | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

25 July 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Creepy Crawlers  »

Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Please Remind Me
Written and Performed by Vikkie Rae Jordan
Courtesy of Marc Ferrari/MasterSource
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User Reviews

The Girl Among Dopes
12 February 2007 | by (Virginia Beach) – See all my reviews

Supergenres are genres that are so mature that the story is so predictable that it becomes a wrapper for a story within, or a situation within that is the implicit focus. The enclosing supergenre here is a bug horror movie. Its formulaic as it should be. Ho hum.

The situation within is a town populated dually with simple good folk, all extreme stereotypes denoted in the briefest of shorthands: the warm old woman who here is also the schoolmarm, in charge of the island's kids. The dumb old man who is borderline senile. The tough but honest town cop who by himself keeps the rest of the town in line. And that whole rest of the island? Well, they are 30 year old high school male dropouts, unemployed drunks with no sense whatever.

Normally these guys would be associated with some Southern setting, Confederate flags and perhaps some indication of sexual deviance or inbreeding. But here they are in the rural north, a relocation that underscores the importance of the stereotype apart from place. It makes the fact that they are drunken dopes significant.

In the midst of this is our woman, the whole point of this inner story. I'm interested in this because of all the actresses they could have chosen, the thousands upon thousands who could handle this slight part, they chose a specific type. They chose her because of how she looks — there can be no other reason. She's a redhead. She's a redhead of a specific type.

I'm interested in narrative structure, patterns, templates and bits of the visual grammar we use to covey complex notions by reference. Women in film are the most complex when it comes to this but within women and film, redheads are the simplest case. So I have a serious study of redheads underway, and what they mean if terms of shorthand, and how that shorthand references folding.

I think there are only a few slots for redheaded women. There's the freckled, sometimes almost pigtailed, puffylipped womanchild. There's the sexually powerful, tempestuous woman, sometimes self-destructive. She seems to be modeled on a sort or aristocratic face: significant forehead and eyes — and represented by women who know how to act with their upper face instead of the lower.

And there's a sort of in between, the girl-next-door type who represents possibilities, who carries latent qualities of these extremes and others, but who is happy in the theatrical representation of simply being a representation.

So, our character here is played by Kristen Dalton. Her qualities as an actress are that she has a pronounced chin and a magnificent, aristocratic bearing. She's learned to move with that chin — actually her mouth — as the center of gravity. She isn't a great actress but she does act with her eyes. In other words, she understands a redhead's place in film, and knows how to exploit it. Why do I focus on this one redheaded actress? Because Scorsese saw her (in this, I think) and cast her as Nicholson's girlfriend in his own movie about movies and acting, curiously titled unless you know his intent.

So we will see a lot of Kristen, and we will see her BE red and tell us red.

The key elements of the story here have her as essentially the only woman in a town of dopey rednecks. All are single of course. She holds her own, being the soul of the school, the chief merchant (you literally can't buy anything unless you find her), and the color at the docks, running a forklift.

There's a big city doctor in the story but he's there only to notice her and draw her into the story. She circulates among the dopes. That's the story: her among the dopes.

Ted's Evaluation -- 2 of 3: Has some interesting elements.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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