- 25GB Blu-ray Disc
- 1080p/MPEG-4 AVC
- English Dolby TrueHD 5.1
- English, Spanish
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Camel Spiders (Blu-ray)
Starz/Anchor Bay / 2011 / 85 Minutes / Unrated
Street Date: March 27, 2012
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- List Price: $24.99
- Amazon Price: $12.99 (48%)
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Reviewed by Aaron Peck
Sunday, April 29, 2012
I know, I know, I know. It's the movie you've all been waiting months for. The movie that you will prominently display directly in front of your TV as a talking point whenever guests wander into your home. "What? What's that you say?" you'll say coyly as your guests try to hide their dry-heaving faces from your sight. "Oh, well since you asked," (they didn't you, just can't contain your excitement) "that's 'Camel Spiders.' That's right, 'Camel Spiders!' It's presented by cult classic director Roger Corman, so you know that it's going to be low-budget quality at its best." Your guests try to flee, but you shut the door and lock it, because this is a movie they'll never forget. They must watch it.
Now imagine that the guests in this house are you, and the overly excited person is the one and only person on the face of the planet that actually thought 'Camel Spiders' was a good movie. If you ever find yourself in this situation, run. If the door is locked, jump out the window. If the windows are barred shut, find a spoon and tunnel out of there. Do whatever you can to not watch 'Camel Spiders.'
'Camel Spiders' starts out with a group of Marines shooting at a group of people with headscarves on, which in movies means they're terrorists. It's not looking good for the Marines until… an horde of badly animated camel spiders descend on the terrorists, jumping on their faces, as horrible CGI blood spurts pop out of their skin. After a Marine is killed three or four spiders sneak into his coffin. They manically click as they plot their world domination.
Fast-track to the U.S. where the Marine's body is being transported back home until the truck is involved in a wreck and the spiders escape into a nondescript desert. We're informed that they are extremely dangerous and can reproduce within days. As far as I could tell, only three or four spiders entered the coffin and only a few more than that fled the coffin after the truck crash. This whole movie seems to take place over one or two days, but the number of camel spiders builds exponentially, most likely because the VFX guy fell asleep on the copy-and-paste button or something. In only a few hours the desert is overrun by what are apparently the rabbits of the arachnid world. They reproduce with a ferocious speed. Soon they're devouring every poor soul in sight.
As for the characters, eh, who really cares about them? Most of the characters are stationed in the movie only to fall on the ground and wave their arms wildly so crudely animated spiders can be placed on them in post-production.
'Camel Spiders' is so inanely stupid that I'm not even sure a RiffTrax commentary track would make it more palatable. There's absolutely no reason to watch it, there isn't even any needless nudity. I mean, seriously!
I know you were all expecting 'Camel Spiders' to be the height of bug chomping mayhem, I'm sorry to disappoint you. There is a quote on the back of the case from someone named Joe Bob Briggs who states, "In the annals of giant face-eating insectoid carnage, no one has ever done it better." Apparently he hasn't seen 'Arachnophobia,' or 'Starship Troopers,' or even 'My Girl.' What? Those bees in 'My Girl' were infinitely scarier than the these crappy excuses for man-eating insects.
The Blu-ray: Vital Disc Stats
This is an Anchor Bay release. It comes on a 25GB Blu-ray Disc and is packaged in a standard Blu-ray keepcase. It's a Region A release.
Flat, icky, digital photography. 'Camel Spiders' photography lacks depth and dimension. Shadows are flat and lifeless. Detail is fine, but with all the other problems going on it doesn't really pull the video presentation out of the mire it finds itself in. The biggest complaint here is that the CG is some of the worst computer animation you're likely to see anywhere. In high-def the ugliness is amplified. It's unbearable to watch. I know the CG has nothing to do with the transfer quality, but at some point the actual visuals being shown need to count for or against the final score. They would've been better off putting paper cut-outs of spiders attached to strings on sticks and had a few people just bounce them along in front of the camera. It's that bad.
Okay, so there is some light with the 'Camel Spider' Dolby TrueHD 5.1 track. There's something to like there. It's fairly well-rounded, featuring some nice surround sound when needed. The spider noises are beyond silly. They sound like mini spaceships moving in on their prey. Dialogue is clear, however, even though whatever is said by the characters is useless anyway. Screams from helpless victims as they roll on the ground can be heard distinctly. So, if you watch it you'll know that you're getting a pretty decent audio mix I guess.
You mean to say that there aren't any special features on how these amazingly detailed CG spiders were created? Well, I'm shocked!
There are no Blu-ray exclusives provided.
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It's called 'Camel Spiders,' I mean really, there isn't much more to say than that. Not much can be expected from a movie called 'Camel Spiders' except for maybe dumb fun. But there isn't any fun to be had here, just a whole lotta dumb. One to avoid. Watch 'Corman's World' instead.
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