I Love Bad Movies: Nature Attacks! – By James A. Roberson

Mother Nature is without a doubt the original Dr. Frankenstein. And in her lab she has created a crap-load of creepy critters ready to throw-off the chains of oppression and raise-up against their bug spray toting overloads.
Such an upraising takes place in the 1972 film "Frogs." A film Variety called, "A shocker reminiscent of Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds." (In fairness to the reporter that made the remark; he had only seen two films prior: The Birds and Cool Hand Luke. Which would explain the quote Variety didn’t use…"A shocker that is nothing like Cool Hand Luke.")

In "Frogs," a pre-mustached Sam Elliot encounters an assortment of deadly wildlife, none of which are frogs. Yes, there are a lot of frogs in the film, but they don’t really do anything. Of course, if the film were called "The Deadly Associates of Frogs," it would most likely be mistaken for some kind of hipster, art-house flick. The sort of high-brow film de cinema that is considered "brilliant" because it’s in black & White, at least on of the characters is a writer, and there are no spiders attacking William Shatner. (Which, if you haven’t seen "Kingdom of the Spiders" then you really haven’t seen what Bill Shatner has to offer cinema; it’s Kirk in a cowboy hat.)

The movie poster for "Frogs" is one of my favorite examples of "empty-promise advertising:" a frog with a human arm hanging from its mouth (suggesting unnaturally-large frogs eating people.) Of course, I could be misinterpreting the scale of the image; maybe the poster is not suggesting "Giant Frogs," but tiny bite-size humans.

Bigger is better. And there seems to be two major plot devices that can produce big bad-ass bugs or beast. One is Science. Science is a great way to create a giant anything (at least that’s what the ads on late night TV are saying.) Science has given us twenty-foot tall, building crushing creatures, which can sometimes, but not always, shoot radioactive blasts from their eyes or mouth.

The second over-used plot device for creating massive monsters is the "Prehistoric Beast in Modern Times" idea. And if we know anything about theses ancient beast it’s that they are continuously getting "trapped in the ice" (which is a result of leaving the cave without a coat.)

Then you have a big budget B-movie like Jurassic Park that brings both Prehistoric beast and science together. Dinosaur DNA harvested from mosquitoes trapped in amber, and cloned with the help of frog DNA, makes "trapped in the ice" look like the backwoods hillbilly of plot devices.

The over-all idea of theses films is quit simple; humans just don’t play well with nature. We cut down forest, dump toxic waste, and relentlessly invade the natural habitats of creatures. We have it coming! Of course, I’d like to think that if we went to some island and found King Kong, that (with are newly found "eco-friendly" attitude) we wouldn’t be stupid enough to bring him back. I assume we would just videotape him and put it on the Discovery Channel.