Directed by: Griff Furst
Written by: Paul A. Birkett, Eric Fosberg
Starring: Tracey Gold, Edward Furlong, Bug Hall, and Ethan Phillips
Even if this flick wasn’t any giant-spider-eating-human’s fun (which it is) it would still be blessed with one of the best titles to grace a bug movie (or any movie for that matter!) ever: Arachnoquake. Brilliant. Spiders plus earthquakes equals Arachnoquake. Awesome. I can’t say the title enough: Arachnoquake, Arachnoquake, Arachnoquake. Amazing. While this may be a SyFy produced cheapie, it’s a whole load of giant spider munching fun that delivers exactly what a low budget creature feature should: lots of huge genetically impossible creatures running amok and chomping up a cast of disposable characters.
If you hadn’t deciphered it from the (awesome!) title: an earthquake causes a horde of giant (and some small!) spiders to creep out of the ground and start terrorizing the residents of New Orleans. These are no ordinary spiders: they’re albino spiders, which can breathe fire and run on water (see I told you this was awesome!). So we have our rag-tag band of heroes you have to navigate the ever-swarming rampage of fire breathing albino spiders and as is the norm with creature features (and as exactly as it should be) the humans are mere fodder for the bugs and are made up of your usual mixture of reluctant heroes, tourists on vacation, screaming babes and (somewhat bizarrely) Edward (T2) Furlong playing a father to two teenagers (!!??) and the coach of an all girl high school baseball team (!!!!!!????). Now this is even more unlikely than an earthquake hatching giant albino fire-breathing spiders! Still the cast go at it with aplomb, hamming it up when necessary and running and screaming from a surfeit of giant CGI beasties.
Yes the CGI is of the low budget standard (and I’m sure many will have lots to say about how awful it is and the evils of CGI etc, etc) but it’s not bad for a low budget film. Plus, when a creature feature is this packed with giant bug rampaging action, I’ll take shoddy CGI if it means we get giant spiders running across water chasing after humans! This is just one of the wonderfully absurd moments in Arachnoquake which also includes the spiders breathing fire (if I hadn’t mentioned that enough already!) and a quite bonkers finale featuring the hero running around New Orleans in full diving gear (!!??) with a pump action shotgun dispensing spiders. Quite, quite brilliant.
There is only so much you can say about a film called Arachnoquake and while we don’t actually see any earthquakes (it’s just mentioned that it actually happened!) the film certainly delivers on the arachnid front. Logic may take a flying leap out the window (with events just seemingly happening at random) but with decent production values, a great sense of fun and lots and lots of giant spider action, Arachnoquake is bug B-movie gold.