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Movies From the Black Lagoon: Infestation

Movies From the Black Lagoon
Infestation - 2009, Unrated
By Tom Doty
Weekly Contributing Writer

An office worker teams up with a diverse group to stop an invasion of bug monsters in this humorous horror tale from one of the directors who appeared on HBO's 'Project Green Light."
The story begins with an ending as Cooper is called in to his boss' office and released form his obligations to the company. An ear splitting shriek follows the news and Cooper, and his boss, go down hard. He has a horrible wake-up. Almost as bad as waking up in a cheap hotel bathtub, covered in ice, and missing a kidney. The good news is he still has his kidneys but the bad deal is that he wakes up wrapped in webbing and hurling up his lunch like a Frat-Boy after a kegger.
The bad awakening is soon diminished by other circumstances. Turns out the office has a new boss and he is a dog-sized bug that squeals like a pig but bites like a Bengal Tiger. Cooper manages to outwit the beats through clever (though unauthorized) use of a paper cutter. He then unwraps his office mates and the try to assess their situation.
The boss realizes her daughter, Sara, is outside the building so Cooper rushes to her aid. He unwraps her form a web in her car and is thanked with a face full of mace. Meanwhile Mom can't help but shriek at the sight of her daughter in a cocoon but the noise brings a flying version of the bugs and it takes off with her like a rejected monkey from the 'Wizard of Oz."
The group spends one night in the office building whilst coming up with a plan. They opt to check up on some family members while proceeding to Cooper's house where there is a bomb shelter. Along the way Cooper falls for Sara but she thinks he is a selfish slacker who grew up in an emotional void. The bunch learns a lot about their predicament along the way. They find that the bugs can take over humans by injecting them with poison and that the resulting hybrids are super creepy. They also learn that the bugs are blind and get by one super hearing. It is hard to exploit the knowledge since everyone screams at the sight of them.
When Sara gets carried off by a flying critter Cooper is moved to do something extremely heroic, or stupid depending on your viewpoint. He opts to invade the hive to rescue Sara and blow up the nest. The only thing standing in his way is a wall of insects and a military hero father who doesn't trust his son's judgment. It all makes for a fun finale, as Cooper must find a way to conquer his fear and bow up the hive. The problems along the way are numerous but it all comes down to how fast one can unscrew a flashlight and jams the batteries into a detonator while the Queen of the giant bugs is breathing down your neck. Great stuff and brave film fans that stick it out will be treated to one of the best endings I've since a certain giant ape took on a gaggle of fighter pilots.
All films are balancing acts and this one excels at juggling moods, themes, and special effects to craft a roller coaster flick with equal measures of humor and horror. Fun, goofy, and just a little poignant. A strange but tasty brew.
Best Lines: "These are human beings in cocoons, you just can't leave them like that."
"What do you want to do? Wait around for F.E.M.A.?"
"Can we not get all 'Thunder Dome' on each other?"

Tom Doty occasionally emerges from the Lagoon to check his e-mail. If you'd like to get a message to him, write to: You can see Tom in the Washington County Playhouse's "Tune in for Murder" every Friday and Saturday in March, starting on the 9th.

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