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TREMORS 6: A COLD DAY IN HELL (2018)
aka TREMORS 6
Directed by Don Michael Paul
Written by John Whelpley
Starring Jamie Kennedy, Michael Gross, Tanya van Graan, Jamie-Lee Money, Kiroshan Naidoo, Keeno Lee Hector, Rob van Vuuren, Adrienne Pearce, Francesco Nassimbeni, Paul du Toit, Christie Peruso, Jay Anstey, Danny Keogh, Greg Kriek, Alistair Moulton Black, Oscar Petersen, Stephanie Schildknecht, Jenna Upton
I am pretty sure I have seen every TREMORS film and it’s fun that not only has Michael Gross accepted the film as his own little franchise, but also that Kevin Bacon seems to be returning in the Fall for a TREMORS TV Series. So the giant earth worms known as Graboids still seem to have life in ‘em even after all of these years. Having exhausted the sandworms in the desert angle and traveled to Africa to where the mother of all worms was born, where do you go with the franchise? To the arctic, of course!
After finding out that Michael Gross’ Burt Gummer is his father in the last film, Travis (Jamie Kennedy) is still having issues fitting into the lone wolf’s family. When news of a giant Graboid attacking a research team in the Arctic reaches Burt, he packs up his gear and reluctantly lets Travis come along for the ride. But Burt’s multiple battle with the gnarly giant worms has left him with a sort of Graboid tapeworm virus and while the Graboids and their flying young (dubbed “Ass-Blasters” by Travis and Burt) are attacking the station from the cold outside, Burt is battling for his life inside. The cure lays inside the mouth of a live Graboid, so Travis and a crew of misfits must capture a live one. This also pleases the government officials sent to learn how to weaponize the monster worms.
While riddled with clichés from ALIENS to PREDATOR, the TREMORS franchise at least keeps things interesting from one film to the next utilizing the worms to its fullest. Making the threat big and small, world-threatening and personal, this sixth installment at least juggles both stories with some amount of skill. There’s a bit of poetry to the fact that Burt is succumbing to tiny viral worms after beating worms the size of a freight train all his life. So while the script leaves a lot to be desired, there are some themes that elevate the film sleightly.
Michael Gross is a lot of fun. By now, Burt Gummer is a well worn character and in this day and age where a gung ho NRA member might be represented as the worst kind of person, it’s kind of refreshing to see him playing the noble hero in this film. Kennedy had a lot of potential at one point in his career, but really comes off as the Jerry Lewis to Gross’ Dean Martin—offering up some of the film’s most lead-filled lines. Sure when Pappa Gummer gets laid up, he slides into the role of tough guy and does it decently, but for some reason, jokes plop out of Kennedy’s mouth rather than pop.
The effects for the Graboids again work well here. Both CG and practical effects are used and both in the best way possible. I’m happy the franchise is going back to basics with the new series, as I feel the movies have reached the end of their potential in feature form. If someone can come along and breathe new life into these Graboids, I’m in. As is, TERMORS: A COLD DAY IN HELL is your typical, harmless, afternoon monster movie you’d see on ScyFy. You know what that means and what to expect. If that doesn’t scare you, you’ll most likely be as entertained with this film as much as I was.
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