Lurking about the various streaming sites (and also by browsing Amazon recommendations, if you have an order history like mine), i’d hard not to notice that alongside monster movies, one of the safest go-to themes for a b-movie – especially if it’s a made for TV – it’s aliens.
Yes, the “subgenre” it’s not as popular as it was in the ’90s, thanks to tech billionaries indirectly making the point that the “space age” it’s not coming anytime soon, and also making us quite undesirable to contact by the prospective of hypothetical extraterrestrial, but it’s clearly still cheap, fast and popular enough, since i keep on stumbling on “army vs aliens” i never heard of but that managed to get DVD releases, with confusingly non-descript and generic cover artworks.
Though i found this one, Invasion Roswell, on Amazon Prime Video, under his other – and far more generic – title of Exterminators. Despite not being about giant spiders.
But worry not, it has another, slightly more fitting alternate title, “Battle: Earth”. Or the german DVD one, “Exterminators VS Aliens”.
1975. Jaws hit theathers, proving to be a massive success and establishing the idea of the “summer blockbuster film” for Hollywood and the big cinema industry at large, launching the career of Steven Spielberg and going down in history as one of the best “b-movies” ever made, inadvertly spawning the absurdity of what amounts to a full fledged subgenre now, the “shark movie” one.
Why i’m even talking about sharks when tackling a movie about yetis/sasquatches?
Yes, there’s more. There’s always more TV movie monster movies for me to dig up… often just picked to kill off some time on a sleepy saturday morning from my Amazon Prime Video watchlist (when the frigging service decides to keep or relist them without charging more for it, despite being obvious fodder, always were, always will). And there’s a 40 % chance Jym Wynorski directed them.
Jym Wynorski direct this as well, why even doubt he didn’t direct them all at this point?
And as you might have guessed from the year it was released (and my other reviews of similar TV movies), it’s another SyFy commissioned crapfest produced via CineTel films, who also brought us movies like Lavalantula, the Ghoulies franchise, Super Shark, Indipendence Daysaster, even the new strand of I Spit On Your Grave sequels (following the 2010 remake). Just to name a few.
Things lead to things, and so i accidentally started out a Tibor Takacs mini-retrospective of sorts. It just kinda happened, i guess.
And sadly, no, he never made a TV movie about killer frogs or slugs to complete the “asian rock-paper-scissors” trifecta or the “Aesop fables’ bingo”, but he did direct this for SyFy the same year as Ice Spiders, and that would the last creature feature from him until Spiders 3D, as he preferred to do more disaster movies about tornadoes (regular ones) and christmas-family movies, which is – in a way – quite usual for older genre directors to end up doing in the later years.
But today is snakes, or at least one singular Mega Snake, and it’s a bit more interesting than Ice Spiders, more ridiculous but also less by the numbers, even if it’s another Nu Image joint shot in the Bulgarian capital for the same reasons already discussed in previous reviews, as it’s quite cheap.
As promised in the review of Spiders 3D, here’s the review of the spider creature feature TV movie Tibor Takacs directed before the 2013’s Nu Image/Millennium Film one that happened to pretty much be a remake of the 2000’s movie Spiders, produced by the same company.
You might argue i maybe should have done this before Spiders 3D, and you would be correct, but i didn’t even find out Ice Spiders existed before doing research for the other one, so here we are.
I should have guessed that a movie like this would exist, because i do believe this type of genre B-movies (especially if made for TV like this one) will eventually fall victim to what i call the “Pokemon Singularity”, with desperate filmakers mixing and matching animals with a random element/type, and if we can have sharks made of ice, sand (so “earth”), fire (atomic), even ghostly “dark” sharks, sure as shit we can have a movie called Ice Spiders. Possibly about literal spiders made of ice.
Spiders: when you can’t afford sharks or giant reptiles for your creature feature.
And because many people do find arachnids in general to be quite disgusting, so it’s no wonder they’re a constant for b-movies since forever, especially if they’re of giant size.
This time we have Camel Spiders, one of the many late 2000s/early 2010s Roger Corman productions (sporting the “Roger Corman Presents” label on DVD releases), this one directed by Jym Wynorski… credited as Jay Andrews as usual.
YES, another one i was cojoled into watching and reviewing quickly because Amazon Prime Video reminded me they we’re gonna take it off their service in 5 hours. And since i’m still semi-quarantined at home, might as well watch it and review it.
This time it’s about killer birds, crows instead of general “birds”, because clichès.
And like a good chunk of these movie i’ve been “coerced” into reviewing by Amazon Prime Video removing, this is another TV movie for Sci-Fi Channel/SYFY, and it’s somewhat fitting that most of these movies about killer birds were made for TV, since the apocryphal The Birds II: Land’s End in 1994, a movie so good the director Rick Rosenthal (the original Halloween II, Bad Boys, American Dreamer, Halloween Resurrection) asked to be credited as Alan Smithee instead, was also a TV movie.
The title also echoes the “famous” snake creature feature “Sss”, you lure people into watching your movie better with this simplistic attitudine, so KAW is it. I love that in the italian release they added a subtitle with the intent to specify the ravens are not just your common, bargain basement ravens…. but if i were to translate it to english it would literally read “Attack Of The Common Ravens”.
Another one for the ever increasing pile of movies i saved for later on Amazon Prime Video and ended up watching & reviewing before they get taken off or gated off another subscription service.
And yes, it’s a TV movie for Sci-Fi Channel, from before they just rebranded themselves as “SYFY”, but yeah, we’re going back yet again to the neverending well of trash, always flowing, always bursting and ripe for the picking by the cynical, the bored, and the masochist. And people like me, i guess.
Ah yes, the “Jurassic Park X Blade Runner” crossover you never asked for but was actually made, not so much to chomp on a Ridley Scott movie released 22 years priors (at the time), but as to put out something since the TV series based on Casual Rex, the prequel to the novel of Anymous Rex (both written by Enry Garcia, who also wrote a sequel book, Hot N Sweaty Rex, and Repo Men), and – aactually serves as the base for this movie, despite being titled after the first novel.
Yes, they basically reworked the unproduced work for the Casual Rex TV series as a 2 hour movie… not called “Casual Rex”, but “Anonymous Rex”. I guess because it’s a more catchy title. Confused yet? Hope not, but still, how many dino-noir films are out there? I wouldn’t exactly consider Theodore Rex as noir, myself.
I have to add this one is quite hard to even see, it’s on Amazon Prime Video… in the US, and i draw the line at using a VPN or registering to suspicious site for downloads. So i had to watch it on Youtube, in parts, hardsubbed in chinese in an embarassing resolution. I’m not gonna use screenshots from that, for obvious reasons.