Monday, October 22, 2007
The Killer Shrews
Posted by JPX
ROOK - ...'Sho is a lotta quiet out theyah... Almos' smell it, caint'cha?
CAPTAIN THORNE SHERMAN - No, but I can hear it.
The guy from The Dukes of Hazzard’s and Forrest Gump-Bubba-look-a-like, Rook are on route to a small island to drop off supplies and to seek shelter from a coming hurricane. Docking their boat they are greeted by roly-poly Dr. Craigis, his Swedish daughter, Anne, and angry-for-no-reason, Jerry. All are disappointed to learn that Dukes of Hazzard’s guy, Captain Thorne Sherman, will not be taking any passenger off the island given the impending storm. Furthermore they seem annoyed that he wishes to stay on the island for the night.
With little to do until the hurricane blows through, Captain Sherman goes with the gang to their island home while leaving the-red-shirt-guy, I mean, Rook to look after the boat (whatever “look after the boat” means). Captain Sherman eventually learns that there are dangerous animals roaming through the island woods, which is why the doctor was so eager to have his daughter leave the island on Captain Sherman’s boat. But that’s only half the story.
It turns out that a lot of research has been going on in this tropical paradise. At one point, for the benefit of Captain Sherman, but really for the benefit of us, one of the doctor’s colleagues comes in with a tiny shrew and explains that shrews have an incredibly high metabolism and must eat three-times their body weight daily to survive. Dr. Craigis is studying shrews because their brief breeding cycle along with their short lifespans makes them the ideal research subject. Dr. Craigis’ goal? Get ready for this one. Wait for it. Wait for it.
He wants to develop a way to breed human beings to be half their current size in order to take pressure off the Earth’s limited food supply? Huh? Wouldn’t it be easier to find a way to make food bigger? My head is spinning. Anyway, wouldn’t you know it, combining shrews with metabolism experiments proves to be a bad idea. In fact, he achieves the opposite of what he was going for. Rather than shrinking the shrews while lowering their metabolism, he makes them huge while increasing their metabolism (!) Where did he go to school, Suckith U? What’s this all mean? It means that the island is full of dogs-with-pieces-of-carpet-tied-to-them, er, I mean giant killer shrews!
Once all of the above is established, the rest of the film follows these bozos as they try to prevent the dogs-with-carpet-pieces from breaching the doctor’s adobe house (apparently it’s really easy to chew through clay walls). Later, after the “shrews” get the run of the place (and a few are munched), they must work their way back to the seashore to get to Captain Sherman’s (we’re told that shrew can’t swim, and they are perfectly happy to resort to cannibalism if no other food is available).
It’s sometimes difficult to rate these old b-movies. Obviously from a strict “horror” standpoint Attack of the Killer Shrews would receive zero stars. However it falls into the so-bad-it-s-good category. The extra half star is because this film is unintentionally hilarious. Like most b-movies at the time it ends abruptly, like this review.
at 4:28 AM