SLUGS: THE MOVIE
(Slugs, Muerte Viscosa)
Slugs: The Movie is based on Slugs (1982), a novel by British horror writer Shaun Hutson. Hutson is known for his gore-drenched novels. In this respect, Juan Piquer Simon certainly keeps to the essence of the novel, even if he has thrown out almost all other plot similarities. The opening scene is laughable in its deliberate cheese factor involving a woman in a dinghy taking off her clothes to go swimming, moments before her boyfriend is gored to death in the water. A few minutes later there is an entertainingly ludicrous scene where Juan Majan gets a slug in his gardening glove and, in his agonised contortions, ends up spilling acid and overturning a shelf, before hacking off his wrist with an axe and then accidentally igniting the spilt chemicals and blowing up the greenhouse. There are some nastily gore-drenched scenes particularly of two lovers stepping off a bed onto a floor of slugs, which then burrow into the girls naked body. Or of Emilio Linders head exploding with blood and slugs in the middle of a restaurant. There is even a scene where the slugs are seen strangling a hamster. Indeed, these absurdly gore-drenched scenes become the only notable watching point of Slugs: The Movie.
The plot is churned out via the cliches of the Animals Amok genre the hero who knows what is happening but is ignored by all; the authorities who want to quash the heros warnings because of their own ignorance and/or business interest; the climactic venture into creatures sewer lair. Slugs: The Movie is probably the most competently made and watchable of all Juan Piquer Simons films. Even so, in anybody elses books it is still a routine, if not downright poor, film.
Juan Piquer Simon has deliberately made Slugs: The Movie for the English-language market more so than many of his other films in this case, having his largely Spanish cast affecting American accents and having gone to shoot in a real American town (Lyons in New York State). Amid the cast, American actor Michael Garfield has a handsomely assured presence and plays like he means every word that he is saying. One is surprised that Garfield has not gone onto have a more widely known name. Mindedly, none of the rest of the cast have either.
Full film available online here:-