Emily (Sydney Sweeney) and her hot mom Rachel (Christa Campbell) in Spiders 3D
OK, “Don’t Laugh.” worked better in my previous post about the SyFy movie Hyenas because, you know, hyenas laugh. Spiders don’t do anything for me to make a similar pun. This is, in case you haven’t figured it out, a post about another dumb movie that I really like starring the amazingly beautiful Christa Campbell. This time, it’s a giant spider movie called Spiders 3D (2013).
“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself … and [giant] spiders,” FDR
I am severly arachnophobic. I hate spiders, even though it is my job, as a man, to kill them for frightened women. It’s a basic law of nature or something that allows men to feel like heroes every now and then. I do my job to the best of my abilities, but, I hate spiders [he reiterates] or any invertebrate with more than six legs (like those monstrous Cthulhu-esque centipedes creeping around my utility room that probably even frighten the spiders). However, I do, in fact, love spider movies, especially those featuring arachnids of the gigantic variety.
Giant spiders, for the record, cannot exist. It is physically and mathematically impossible. The square-cube law states that when an object [in this case, a spider] increases in size, its surface area increases by the square of the factor while its volume increases by the cube of that factor. Thus, giant spiders (or insects) would collapse under their own weight because their skinny little legs wouldn’t be able to hold up their massive bodies. I learned all this in a 1979 short sci-fi story called “giANTS” by Edward Bryant. So, fear not.
Jack Arnold‘s classic Tarantula (1955) [whose poster hangs in my basement] and Bert I. Gordon‘s Earth vs the Spider [aka The Spider] (1958) were two of my favorite movies that, as a child, I used to watch on local Cleveland late night horror shows. Both movies featured footage of real tarantulas superimposed over the actual filmed footage or real tarantulas crawling over miniature sets; while, later, in The Giant Spider Invasion (1975), a Volkswagon Beetle was disguised as a giant spider! In the 1980s and 1990s, mega cinematic arachnids were mostly exterminated, but, in the 2000s, they returned with a bad CGI-ified B-movie vengeance. I have since endured Spiders (2000), Arachnid (2001), Spiders II: Breeding Ground (2001), Eight Legged Freaks (2002) [with very lovely Kari Wuhrer], Ice Spiders (2007), Camel Spiders (2011), Arachnoquake (2012), Big Ass Spider! (2013), and, of course, Spiders 3D (2013)!
Hot mom Rachel (Christa Campbell) protecting her daughter Emily (Sydney Sweeney) in Spiders 3D
Spiders 3D, like Hyenas, is another bad movie that is made much better by the appearance of Christa Campbell. However, instead of playing a sexy she-hyena, she plays an adorably hot mom or, as the kids say, a MILF. She was 40 years old in 2013. That’s definitely mom age, and, she’s definitely a mom I’d love to … well, never mind. Spiders 3D is yet another bad movie directed by Tibor Takács and featuring his apparent muse Christa Campbell. The film also stars Patrick Muldoon who starred in Ice Spiders, another giant spider movie directed Takács [but, without Campbell]. Oh, what a tangled web [giant spiders] weave!
A chunk of debris fom a derelict Soviet space station crashes into a New York subway tunnel bringing with it a breed of intelligent spiders that were artificially fertilized with alien DNA. The military, led by ruthless Colonel Jenkins (William Hope) working with Russian scientist Dr. Darnoff (Pete Lee-Wilson), evacuates and quarantines the area under the guise of a deadly viral threat. They want the spider queen’s lightweight, bulletproof and stealth web for military and industrial advantages. However, the queen’s egg was found by a medical examiner in the corpse of a transit worker who was the first to arrive at the scene of the crash, and bitten by a spider. She gives the egg to the worker’s supervisor Jason Cole (Patrick Muldoon) who, in turn, gives it to his soon-to-be ex-wife and city health official Rachel (Christa Campbell) for analysis. Jenkins sends his soldiers out to retrieve the egg and kill anyone who knows about it. They succeed in retrieving the egg, but, not in eliminating Jason and Rachel who evade the assassins. Meanwhile, the spiders are growing rapidly in size and escaping into the streets which sucks for Jason and Rachel since their young daughter Emily (Sydney Sweeney) and her adorable sitter Phoebe (Shelly Varod) were locked down in hot mom Rachel’s apartment. Now, Jason and Rachel must find a way to rescue them. “What now?” Rachel wonders. “Get past the giant spiders and the heavily-armed men that are trying to kill us, get to the apartment, grab Emily, get her past the giant spiders and the heavily-armed men, and we’re home free,” he tells her. Obviously, he doesn’t care about saving Phoebe. The spiders assault the military, killing Jenkins. Then, the gigantic spider queen bursts up through the pavement, kills remorseful Darnoff, and, goes on a rampage as reinforcements arrive. Emily finds herself trapped in the subway tunnel after that eight-legged bitch kills Phoebe; but, luckily, Jason and Rachel, eventually, find Emily. They are elated, of course, but, couldn’t care any less about poor adorable Phoebe’s demise. In the end, Jason sends a subway train barreling into the spider queen which sets off an explosion that kills the whole damn horde! That’s what you get when you fuck with the babysitter!
Emily (Sydney Sweeney) and her adorable 19-year-old sitter Phoebe (Shelly Varod) in Spiders 3D
“We’re a happy family / We’re a happy family / We’re a happy family / Me, mom and daddy”
Spiders 3D has bad acting, clichés as big as the giant spiders, and a plot as dumb as medical examiner Dr. Stella (Jon Mack) who informs Jason: “Some insects, such as spiders, plant their eggs in a foreign host.” What?! That’s like saying: “Some snakes, such as frogs …”! Spiders are arachnids, not insects. Arachnida and Insecta are two very different classes of Arthropoda, like Amphibia and Reptilia are two very different classes of Chordata! My 11-year-old daughter knows that! However, despite Spiders 3D‘s shortcomings, I love this dumb movie! Sure, I’ll watch anything with Christa Campbell in it [ever since I first noticed her in Hyenas a week ago], but, this movie is not a waste of time if, like me, you’re a fan of giant spider movies. I love the dark subway setting, and, I love the fake Bulgarian-built New York sets. It’s all very retro. In addition, the CGI is not that bad, especially the gigantic spider queen’s rampage through those fake New York streets. It has a 1950s giant monster-on-the-loose kind of vibe; and, the spider queen is kind of scary and very ugly. She does not look like this …
Not the spider queen in Spiders 3D (2013)
Sydney Sweeney, who plays Emily, is billed as “Introducing Sydney Sweeney.” However, a dozen other pre-Spiders 3D credits are listed for her on IMDb. Anyway, she’s very good in Spiders 3D, especially when she’s, alone, in the toy store facing off against the velociraptor – umm, I mean giant spider. Shelly Varod, who plays adorable Phoebe, has a relativey extensive resume of minor roles including the enticing title Stripper Academy (2007) in which “they bare it all to find out who they really are!” Director Tibor Takács‘s first movie, by the way, was The Gate (1980) with a very young Stephen Dorff. I love that movie!
Watch the trailer for Spiders 3D here …
P.S. Frank Darabont‘s 2007 adaptation of Stephen King‘s 1980 novella The Mist includes a scene with giant spiders as well as many other creepy crawlies from another dimension. I loved the novella when I first read it in 1980, and I love the movie adaptation. A B&W version of the film is included on the DVD and I love it even more.
P.P.S. Someday, I’ll build this …