There are certain parts of nature that I like. Love, even: trees, clouds, wind, rainstorms. One thing with which I struggle? Bugs. Not a bug fan. I can respect them and the world of good they do for plants, but I’m far happier if they stay where they are and leave me the hell alone. Wasps especially – wasps are the assholes of the insect world. Which amazes me that I managed to sit down and watch 2015’s Stung, which features a group of people trying to survive a group of mutated wasps. It’s on Netflix. Here are five reasons to watch it this weekend.
|Yeah, the bugs are way larger.|
Read the plot synopsis over again. A group of people versus 7-foot tall mutated wasps. All that this film needed was Roddy Piper and a bitching synthesizer soundtrack. The best part? It tries to take itself seriously, and strangely, it works. It’s earnest in the face of being completely fucking ridiculous, and this quality makes it likable. Bravo, gang. Bravo.
Julia (Jessia Cook) inherited the catering business that gets involved in the invasion from her dead father. As a result, we get to hear her voice concerns about the future, which includes the pressure of trying to make the business run by herself. Failure isn’t just a fear of everyone hoping to survive the night; it’s the boss who hopes she can keep everything afloat. Julia cares if she has to make the decision to fire you; she wants you to be able to eat. Way too many people can relate to that. The nice thing is that we get to see her fears of fiscal failure translate into fears of not being able to keep everyone alive. It’s a nice metaphor for a recession.
|Metaphor for the economy, perhaps?|
Thought I was going to go for Lance Henriksen as a reason to watch this, huh? Nope. Going for Clifton on this one. Biggest reason? Every time I see him, I scream, “Vegan police! No vegan diet, no vegan powers!” Yes, it’s stupid. But I will watch everything he’s in because he entertains me. He’s got a nice way about him to boot. And I like being able to smile and think about the vegan police. His character, though, is well done here. I think he’s one of those character actors that you can point at and go, “Hey, wait, I know that guy!” We need those; character actors are a dying breed amidst actors that just want to get famous via franchise.
Garden parties make me uncomfortable. It’s not really my thing; I find them to be self-indulgent displays of who can afford for someone else to cook and arrange a centerpiece, which winds up being a statement on the taste you can afford to buy rather than anything else. You can tell that Paul (Matt O’Leary) dislikes it as well. It’s in everything from his forced politeness to the way that he fights back once the wasps come into play. And boy, is that a potent piece of commentary against the wealthy folks attending the party. These people are not seen in a positive light. At all. It’s not even that heavy-handed, but it’s there. If you’re sensitive to classism, you’re going to have fun watching the first 15 minutes.
At the end of the day, this film is a good-enough horror movie. It’s not the absolute best out there, but it will suffice (like Little Caesar’s pizza: sure, you don’t want to advertise that you’ll eat it in a pinch, but you will eat it in a pinch). It’s got some guts, it’s got some plot, a little bit of heart, and enough budget to make the creature effects work. Like most shlock horror as well, it’s got potential to be a great date movie. If you dig being curled up on a couch, under a blanket, you’re going to like this.
|Someone hold me.|