Beware...the, uh, SLUGS are going to get you. Eventually...
A DVD of the horror film Frogs has been sitting on my shelf for years. I haven’t seen it yet, but I know full-well what kind of movie it is. For that reason, it waits for one of those house parties we never throw anymore, where it shall receive the full MST3K treatment from our friends - because that's the extent of the entertainment value to be milked from killer frogs.
I imagine there’s a scene in there where frogs surround a screaming woman and leap on her all at once. Maybe they’ve escaped from a military research lab, having been genetically altered with super-strong legs. Given the sudden ability to leap 8 feet high and some razor-sharp teeth, it wouldn’t take more than a dozen attacking at once to take a person to the ground.
Heck, maybe their tongues are super long too - and extra sticky. A jumping green frogsled team yanks her along, bloody and screaming, back to the Mother Frog, who measures 12 feet tall at a squat and swallows the rest of her whole in a giant, bloody mess. In a remote enough backwater town, far from tanks and nuclear bombs, they could do some damage and grow their numbers considerably before anyone with enough firepower knew what was going on.
My point is, in the make-believe world of B-movie storytelling, it’s easy to get creative with frogs.
Now, try it with slugs. What’s the best you can come up with? I’ll wait.
Whatever you imagined, I guarantee you came up with something way more interesting than those who somehow raised enough money to finance their dream - Slugs: The Movie.
Slugs fall at least two notches down from frogs on the Threat Scale. At least frogs have a certain degree of mobility that a slug couldn’t achieve with roller skates and a jet pack.
Mind you, this film is based on the novel of the same name by Shaun Hutson. Yep, there's a book.
Ok, here we go: Mike Brady (who does not have three boys of his own) is the health inspector of a small town where people are dying mysteriously. By “mysteriously,” I primarily mean having their faces chewed off. He begins to think killer slugs might have something to do with it. Of course, people think he’s crazy. Clearly, people are stupid.
The dead-serious scientist at the local high school spends his whole day mixing vials of red, green, yellow and blue-colored liquid. Mike brings a sample to him for examination - the one that bit Mike's finger in his garden. He helps by rattling off a bunch of encyclopedia facts about slugs. Thank you, Mr. Scientist.
These slugs creep just as slowly as any slugs you’ve ever seen, yet manage to fill the floor of a room in seconds. This, of course, spells certain doom for folks who happen to be, say, bumping uglies on the bed above. Doesn’t anyone have a good pair of rubber boots?
Mike’s friend, Don, works maintenance for the city and, coincidentally, he’s noticing terrible things happening in the sewer system below. They conclude these slugs must be breeding in the sewers, near the site of a toxic dump that was closed 20 years ago.
One guy would rather cut off his own hand with a hatchet than fish out the slug in his glove. They’re coming out of the toilets. They’re dropping out of the water faucet in Mike’s kitchen sink. Mike tells the head of the city waterworks - who’s pretty pissed at being interrupted in the middle of his Subway sandwich - that they need to shut down the whole water supply, and…
Wait a second. If the city's sewer system is somehow connected to its water supply, this town has much bigger problems than a few thousand man-eating slugs.
Everything comes to a head in a lively and baffling finale in the waste water tunnels below.
I don’t need to tell you that this movie takes itself 100% seriously. The dialogue is hilarious and the acting mostly terrible. You won’t believe how angry all the city officials are, their cavalier attitudes toward death and safety, and the complete lack of trust in their obviously upstanding health inspector.
In short, there isn’t one believable element to this whole movie. When people die, though, it's pretty gross. Which means it's a load of fun to watch. It may be worse than Frogs, but it’s still two notches above C.H.U.D.Now that you’ve seen the film…
…aren’t you glad you did?