We owe a debt of gratitude to Tremors (Underwood, 1990). Its arrival kicked off another boom cycle for one of our favorite subgenres – the creature feature! About every twenty years we get a new permutation of this subgenre and now it was the nineties’ turn. It was time for a little more sophisticated version of what came before. This time around, the movies were for all of us that had seen those movies that had paved the way for these. They could wink at us because we knew what was coming, but it was still that same thrilling roller coaster ride. The audience and the movies were more self-aware by now, but it was no less fun.
So how did Tremors achieve what it did? You take a Jaws chassis and outfit it with a few choice spare parts – classic buddy comedy music from the eighties, a mutation worthy of atomic age sci-fi, beautiful western scenery worthy of John Ford, and a touch of nature strikes back from the seventies. Add in video store culture and great word of mouth and there you go – a VHS era cut classic is made. The family friendly nature of the scares only served to turn this into one of that generation’s great comfort movies, It’s one you can put on for a sleepover, a party, or just for yourself anytime you come across it on television. The Graboids are always there to keep you company.
What you’ll find in this episode: isolation, community, lots and lots of guns, the life cycle of creature features, and my near death experience.
Links and Recommendations:
Check out Tremors on IMDB.
Ericca’s further viewing pick of Cast a Deadly Spell.
Cole’s further viewing pick of Arachnophobia.
Trace fossils reveal the existence of real giant sand worms!
Real life Perfection – The Eleven Tiniest Towns in Nevada.