With a title like this one, you’d think I’d be doing a post on dancing bears or singing monkeys, and belive me, it’s not like I haven’t thought of it before. Alas, I am referring to those denizens of the animal kingdom that are lurking in the shadows, waiting to kill you and everyone you love.
When yard work a few weekends ago involved me rummaging through my garage which had become festooned with spider webs, it got to me thinking about that classic of the 1970s rampaging nature sub-genre movie starring William Shatner, Kingdom of the Spiders (1978). Kingdom is schlocky in the best B-movie tradition, with Shater hamming it up as usual. I first caught this film on TV when I was 10 or 11 and the opening scene with a gaggle of tarantulas falling from a speeding car’s sun visor, has stayed with me ever since. The creepiest moments come when victims are found cocooned in giant spider web nests. And who doesn’t love the scene of the pilot of the bi-plane screaming like a little girl after suddenly discovering giant blood-thirsty spiders have invaded his cockpit. It’s like your in-laws dropping by for a surprise visit carrying a bucket full of giant blood-thirsty spiders instead of subscription to the fruit -of-the-month club. Well, maybe not exactly.
This particular sub-genre of the suspense/horror film really found its legs in the mid to late 1970s. After the success of Jaws (1975) many studios were wanting to cash in on the feeding frenzy of fear. Below are a few other wonderfully awful films from this particular off-shoot of the horror film.