Image via Wikipedia
Eight-Legged Freaks, David Arquette, Kari Wuhrer, Doug E. Doug, 2002, 99 minutes
If you want to see giant killer spiders, skip the SciFi Channel, skipp all the other spider movies, and check this one out.
Mix toxic waste and gene spliced spiders to create arachnids of several varieties that kill the experimenter. It’s an adequate rationalization that could be improved only by a proposal from Pinky and the Brain that you add a microwave. The combination would be undeniably mysterious as a source of evolutionary change.
But the bottom line is huge jumping spiders that pounce on prey, trapdoor spiders that leap out of holes in the ground to ambush their prey, web-spinners that snatch and cocoon their prey, and a flock of huge tarantulas even Clint Eastwood’s jet fighter might have trouble burning down with napalm. Guess what the prey is?
The setting is Prosperity, Arizona. Mutated spiders get loose after a fatal mistake. They head toward town for burgers and fries and there corner the local population in a new shopping center (if it’s not zombies, it’s giant spiders).
Starring is David Arquette, as a guy returning to his hometown in time for the festivities, Kari Wuhrer as his former love, who is also a mom, and the town’s police chief. Through in a slimey real estate developer who has been illegally dumping toxic waste and an unpaid cast of thousands of spiders.
I’m like everybody else. Giant spiders aren’t possible. They are evolutionarily adapted as far as they can go.
There are a variety of reasons why spiders can’t get too much larger. Chiton seems tough but for something that gets more our size, it’s inadequate. That’s why we have bone, not chiton. The way spiders breathe is primitive, adequate for a spider’s size but it wouldn’t work for something much larger. Ultimately, you smack into the Square Inverse Ratio law. When you double a spider’s size, you quadruple it’s weight. By the time it got big enough to be cast in this movie, it wouldn’t be able to function. It’d be a mass of guck.
But I’m no purist. I am perfectly capable of suspending my disbelief to watch spiders do their worst. It taps into that part of the brain that says “I know it’s not possible, but if it happened…” Get some competent actors, even some that are worthy only of being Purina Spider Chow, and you got a movie.
DVD Extras include the usual deleted scenes which includes more spider action and more.