EARTH VS THE SPIDER (1958)

Director: Bert I. Gordon. Cast: Ed Kemmer, June Kenney, Eugene Persson

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An enormous spider terrorizes a small town (as opposed to the entire Earth) in this hoot and a half from Cinema Fiasco’s favourite director Bert I. Gordon. While searching for her missing dad, teenager Carol Flynn discovers an enormous horrible hairy spider that lives in a cave and sucks people’s juices out. Incapacitated by DDT, the spider is revived by a rock and roll band – “It’s the devil’s music” – and goes on the rampage. Featuring Bert’s trademark cheesy special effects and thirty year old adolescents, there’s lots of running and screaming and a great moment when the spider eats the high school janitor.

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EMPIRE OF THE ANTS (1977)

Director: Bert I. Gordon. Cast: Joan Collins, Robert Lansing, John David Carson

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Ants tuck into some radioactive waste, mutate into man-sized monsters (of course) and start snacking on a bunch of real estate speculators. “It’s no picnic!” but this camp classic is a feast of hammy acting, awful dialogue – “I wish I hadn’t seen Charlie die like that!” – and crappy special effects that look like giant ant heads being shoved into the faces of screaming actors. Joan Collins, in her most embarrassing role ever, suffers the added indignity of spending the entire movie in a pair of beige K-Mart culottes.