From the director of the cult classic Pieces comes this horror tale based on the novel by Shaun Hutson.
In the small town of Merton, local man Ron Bell heads home after a night of drinking but the next morning, he is found dead. His body has been decimated where he is barely recognizable. Discovering the body is local health inspector Mike Brady, who is joined by Sheriff Reese. The only clue Mike has is a slime trail that leads to the basement but since it is too dark, he avoids it. When another local, Mrs. Forbes, cannot understand why the drains have been clogged, Mike’s friend and head of sanitation Don Palmer is able to unclog it, but not sure the cause.
However, all of it changes when Mike’s wife Kim discovers some slugs in her garden. When Mike reaches towards the slug, he is bitten. He soon realizes something is wrong. With help from British-born scientist John Foley, Mike makes a shocking discovery that the slugs have come from the fallout of Merton once being a toxic waste dump. Meanwhile, more locals have fallen prey to the carnivorous creatures and when no one believes him except for Kim, John, and Don, Mike must find a way to stop the slugs once and for all before the whole town falls victim.
Based on the 1982 horror novel from Shaun Hutson comes this 1980s underseen horror film from director Juan Piquer Simón, the director of the genre cult classic Pieces. The film has exactly what you need for an 80’s horror film: the killers, the dimwitted supporting characters, loads of gore, and the prerequisite TnA. The film’s SFX even earned a Goya Award that year.
The acting is definitely a mixed bag, but that’s only because the cast is comprised of both American and Spanish actors who are either fluent in English or in some cases, dubbed over. Michael Garfield leads the way as health inspector Mike, who seems to be doing well at first, especially with his tough teacher wife Kim, played by Kim Terry. He is willing to go above and beyond to protect her when it comes to the slugs, especially when they show up at their home via garden and drain in one scene.
The death scenes are very insane and are what you would expect from Simon. If you’ve seen Pieces, then you know you’re going to be in for a shocking good time. There are dismemberments, explosions, eyeballs coming out, and a classic scene where one victim has the slugs’ parasites explode out of his eye! Compared to the book, not all of the characters appear and there is one victim who suffers a different fate between the book and movie, but for the movie version, it’s pretty much a given as to why it makes sense.
Slugs is an 80’s creature feature that gives the Juan Piquer Simón signature with the gore and nudity involved. Some great SFX despite some occasional bland acting, this is a great 80s horror gem.
WFG RATING: B
New World Pictures presents a Dister Films production. Director: Juan Piquer Simón. Producers: Juan Piquer Simón, José Antonio Escrivá, and Francesca de Laurentiis. Writer: Ron Gantman; based on the novel by Shaun Hutson. Cinematography: Julio Bragado. Editing: Richard Rabjohn.
Cast: Michael Garfield, Kim Terry, Philip MacHale, Alicia Moro, Santiago Álvarez, Concha Cuetos, John Battaglia, Emilio Linder, Kris Mann, Kari Rose, Frank Braña, Manuel de Blas.