Blu-ray Review: Critters Attack! (2019)

July 14, 2019

Written by DanXIII

Daniel XIII; the result of an arcane ritual involving a King Diamond album, a box of Count Chocula, and a copy of Swank magazine, is a screenwriter, actor, artist, and reviewer of fright flicks…Who hates ya baby?

Those flesh eating maniacs from beyond the stars, the Crites, once again touch down in a rural town and if there’s one thing you can bet on it’s that their hunger hasn’t abated since the last time they were here. Soon, this will make life difficult for young Drea (Tashiana Washington); a small town girl with big dreams who has taken on a babysitting job for a college professor who’s school she is hoping to schmooze her way into after being denied a scholarship.

You see, Drea takes her charges on a lil’ nature walk (with her own alien-obsessed little brother tagging along), but unfortunately for her, those horrendous hairballs are callin’ the wicked woods home these days so these folks are going to be in for one hell of a fight if they want to survive this night of a million teeth and claws!

I’ve never made it a secret that Critters was my all-time fav of the small, hungry creatures run amok sub-genre that dominated the silver screens and video store shelves in those eerie eighties (and for more words on that very subject head here). Why did I love it so? Well, it had iconic monster designs from the ultra-talented Chiodo brothers for one, a great sci-fi comic book aesthetic, and it’s bucolic setting reminded me of the small mountain town I parked my ass in during my misspent youth.

I’m happy to report that Director Bobby Miller and Screenwriter Scott Lobdell have done right by us Critter fiends; this is a fangtastic follow-up to the original series! The young cast is likable, the story gives us what we crave…while still managing to present some new elements (in this case a friendlier female Crite and a newfound weakness that I won’t divulge here), and the jump scares, goofy charm, and gore (you will see Crites dispatched in more over-the-top violent ways than you would ever dream possible…which results in the series’ first “R” rating) are all in plentiful supply!

Other things working in the film’s favor are; the fact that the Crites are brought to life by good ol’ practical effects and puppetry (as are the gore effects)…and though not executed by the Chiodo brother’s, their work is emulated incredibly well…a fun return performance from the first film’s Dee Wallace (now armed with the alien bounty hunter tech seen in the previous flicks…and though I know their storyline was resolved at the end of the fourth film, I would have loved to see at least one faceless ass-kicker present here), and a wonderful, synth heavy score courtesy of Russ Howard III.

Along with all of the fun above, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment have included a few extras on the Blu-ray/DVD combo release as well. Included are: featurettes on the film’s special effects, a look behind-the scenes, a look at the making of the “Critter ball” sequence, and a totally ridiculous (and hilarious) scene specific audio commentary featuring Miller and a Critter.

if you love Critters than it doesn’t get any better than this; the series is clearly in the hands of folks that love it and know (and care) what the fans want: a funny, violent, hair covered ball of awesomeness!

 

 

Critters Attack! will be available on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital on 7/23!

 

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