What would the world come to if it were attacked by red slimy worms that infected human beings and turned them into zombies, which in turn are all connected to a single alien that used to be the loving but sexually-frustrated husband of hottie actress Elizabeth Banks? What would you do? Well, according to lead actor Nathan Fillon in one spectacularly-delivered line of dialogue: "Probably become just like them."
Slither is the funny but not that funny horror-comedy from writer/director James Gunn. Though he hasn't directed anything of importance before, he definitely has the horror experience after writing such things like Dawn of the Dead and, ahem, the Scooby Doo franchise. Slither relies on some slick dialogue, some amusing monsters and, most of all, some great gore, but perhaps get sidetracked by being a little too gross and not funny enough. Still, that doesn't mean it's not an entertaining ride.
Slither isn't for everyone. It is, by all definitions of the genre, a B-grade movie. You have to appreciate the cheesiness, and you especially have to appreciate the intentional cheesiness. With Slither, it's really hard to tell at times how cheesy the movie is intending to be, which is either really good or really bad. On the one hand, Gunn has successfully created a film that is gory, full of funny dialogue containing the F-word (by that I mean "fuck") and yet still manages to be goofy, while on the other, its seamlessness between comedy and horror almost suggests that this movie be taken more seriously than it should be.
Regardless, if you like B-grade horror movies where dogs get eaten, Slither is worth seeing. Fillon, who dazzled in Serenity and "Firefly" (same thing), is a pretty similar character here, playing a sarcastic policeman who lusts after his beautiful co-star whose husband is no longer with her as he has mutated into a human/animal-eating, zombie-inducing pile of flesh. To me, it is the clear moment to make his move while her husband is busy killing people and she is emotionally vulnerable, but instead Fillon decides to try to save people. Anyway, he's funny.
Banks also plays off him well, serving as eye candy and a whole lot more. She always seems to have very pronounced expressions, and those expressions work especially well in this film for some reason. I guess I would show shock, too, if I realized I was married to Jabba the Hutt.
Part of me wants to say that Slither is a one-hit wonder, but the other part of me actually wants to watch this film again just to see those red little worms inching their way down people's throats. Critics/Universal's marketing deparatment weren't kidding when they compared this movie to Tremors, except for this movie is intentionally cheesy.
Slither is a fun horror-comdedy that has some great lines of dialogue, some bloody gore and a rather unique monster. It isn't quite as good as I was hoping, but still has some moderate entertainment value.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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