Monday, October 10, 2011

The Bite (1989)

How about this storyline: a young couple travels through New Mexico, the man gets bitten by a radioactive snake who transforms his arm to a killer snake! Not to forgot the short stop at a gas station where the owner has a dog-monster in his basement! Wtf?! And do you know what? This is an extremely entertaining movie, totally absurd and very well-made. Why?

First of all, The Bite is boring. It keeps up the pace like a pro, never stops for any unnecessary plot-twists or romantic storytelling-roadblocks. Frederico Prosperi (who also made the wacky Wild Beasts) tells his story with frantic editing and actors who knows exactly what they're doing. It might only be Bo Svenson who seem to be somewhere else (probably longing for a bottle of whiskey and the TV at his hotel room) and just slums along to make the day go faster. Another odd casting choice is Jamie Farr as a travelling salesman, and he's not bad at all. It's like he's wanted to do something similar for a long time, and he's inspired and plays his part with both one part seriousness and one part tongue in cheek.

There's not much to write about The Bite, because it's main reason for existing is the awesome and ultra-cool special effects by Screaming Mad George! It was a couple of years since I watched The Bite the last time, but during this period I happen to forget the insanity in the effects-department. From the monster-dog, who's just in the movie for a minute or two, to the gory jaw-rippings (not one, but two of 'em!) - including one where the snakehand also crawls down the throat and rips out the heart of of the victim. The other main effects-sequence is when our hero finally is taken over by the snake-thingie and he's body is pressing out snakes, big and small! Gory, fun, graphic and spectacular. I love the bizarre scene when his head is split open to reveal a giant snake!

I mean, The Bite is not a movie filled with stuff you haven't seen before (Hmm... the head/snake thing maybe...) and is a typical cheesy horror movie from a time when this kind of movies was dying. It would have fit better as a movie from 1984-1985 than from 1989, but that makes it so damn charming to.

Give The Bite a new chance, forget about the haters and judge for yourself!

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