"Tremors": Blu-Ray, DVD Movie Review

11/27/2010 Posted by Admin


Blu-Ray, DVD Movie Review

Directed by Ron Underwood, Written by S.S. Wilson and Brent Maddock, Rated PG-13, 96-minutes.

By our guest blogger, Matthew Schimkowitz

Tributes to B-Movie monsters filled cinemas throughout the 1980s as directors like Sam Raimi and Joe Dante used their modest budgets to cult- and box-office success.

Arriving late to the party was "Tremors," a scattershot horror comedy that starts strong thanks to its leads, but which loses steam the more characters we meet. Director Ron Underwood never quite hits his stride between the scares and laughs and as a result, delivers a serviceable, but rarely great campy monster picture.

While moving out of their one-horse desert town, two handymen, Valentine (Kevin Bacon) and Earl (Fred Ward), realize a race of subterranean worms are attacking their former home. They turnaround to warn their friends only to find the creatures, attracted by seismic activity, have cornered their friends in a local diner. From there, Valentine and Earl begin forging a plan to escape from and hopefully kill these creatures.

"Tremors" is a bit inconsistent in its efforts, especially in comparison to its fantastic opening act. Ward and Bacon play off each other perfectly – one flies by the seat of his pants, the other plans ahead. They play each interaction with campy gusto, laughing along with the film’s hilarious premise, acting charming, heroic and funny.

Not much can be said for the rest of the cast, who spend much of the film engaged in a shouting match. Valentine’s love interest, Rhonda (Finn Carter), is probably the worst offender, crossing that line between so bad it’s good and just plain bad. The rest keep with the film’s frantic energy -- it just gets a little annoying after a while.

This split between the leads and the rest of the cast slows the film down in the second half. Earl and Valentine’s attempts to rally their uncooperative friends together gets redundant, especially as they continuously attempt to yell over each other. The film sticks to this main conflict for cheap thrills and hammy laughs, but it rarely hits both successfully.

A few inconsistencies aside, "Tremors" does make for some cartoony fun. The creature designs are effectively funny and they provide a great foil to the equally artificial characters and plot. "Tremors" is a film that refuses to take itself seriously and because of that, it mostly succeeds.

Grade: B-

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