Director: John Allardice
Starring: Daniel Cosgrove, Tamara Davies, Dennis Boutsikaris, Ken Lerner, William Keane
Terror gets under your skin
When the super intelligent nerd Brain «Bean» Gage ends up dead, his army brother Ted tries to find out what caused his death. Detective Gina O’Bannon is handling the case for the police and the two of them join forces to find out who is responsible. The theories they go through involves everything from overdose to cult killing, but in the end they find out that there is a military experiment on cockroaches going on at the university that Bean attended and that’s what caused the death of Brian.
They Crawl has a lot going on at once. There’s the Trillion cult with their leader Tiny, played by Mickey Rourke, a substory that doesn’t go anywhere and is really not needed at all in the movie except to put Rourke in it for a few minutes. I can understand why you would want to put some Rourke in this, but this subplot just doesn’t add anything to the movie and shouldn’t have been there in the first place. I’m sure they could have figured out some other way to add Rourke to the film instead.
There’s the evil experiment plot about how these cockroaches can communicate. The detectives work on putting together several murders and hunting down clues. Oh, and somewhere in there the real reason why anyone would watch this, the cockroaches are to be found. A mystery movie where we KNOW there are killer cockroaches is not a good idea, it’s a terrible one. If you’re doing a killer bug movie then just do that, cause that’s what the audience will want and expect.
They seemed to have a big enough budget for this movie to be able to do better with, well, everything. When the cockroaches first show up they look great. No CGI bugs here! Oh wait, too early… at the end the cockroaches all bind together to create MEGAROACH!?! When you see the thing you start to wonder if this is the early work of The Asylum.
This was the first and only movie that John Allardice directed. He has continued to work, mostly with visual effects, and I’m sure he’s doing a better job with that than directing. All of the cast, except Rourke are forgettable in the film and it makes you wish that they had created a simpler story with Rourke in the lead against these cockroaches that are sadly underused. They Crawl is disappointing, even for fans of killer cockroach films.