REVIEWED
8/22/04

STORY



LOOK

King of the Ants
Director: Stuart Gordon
Year: 2003
TRT: 1:43


Damn. I coulda sworn I wrote this bastard up a couple of weeks ago. Go to look for the file, it's MIA. Apparently I got a little too "tired" before putting this puppy to bed. Kind of a shame, really, because I was really looking forward to this recent outing by Stuart "Re-Animator" Gordon in a shift away from his typical fantastic gore-fests. Not that I have anything against Re-Animator or From Beyond, I quite enjoy them actually. But this more realistic/dramatic take on the dark underbelly of life left me wanting a bit more. So I had to watch the fucker again.

Sean Crowley ain't exactly a professional when it comes to painting homes. He scrapes by picking up odd jobs here and there, but really doesn't have much of a life. Opportunity comes knocking when he meets electrician "Duke" Wayne (George Wendt), and decides to take the low road to quick cash and a new life at the simple price of morals. It bites him in the ass, kicks him in the head, and leaves him for dead. But the thing is, he doesn't die. And he gets pretty pissed off to boot.

Normally you would think any movie starring both George Wendt and Daniel Baldwin would be an immediate loser. Truth is, they actually do decent enough with their roles, Wendt as the right-hand man of the sleazy developer played by Baldwin. The real letdown is in the whole love-interest thing incorporating Kari "Put Those Things Away Already" Wuhrer, whose bad scripting and ill-performed emotions sink the parts she shows up in. Except where she's naked, of course. Which isn't too often. And without the boob-job. Must say decent job by newcomer Chris McKenna in the lead as Crowley, taking on some pretty difficult material and making it fairly believable.

Great Scene: Crowley's conversation with Ray Matthews (Baldwin), both on the golf course and in the car setting up Crowley's new job. Also the fact that Ron "Office Space" Livingston is in it.

DVD Notes: Decent enough disc put out by DEJ Productions, includes an alright commentary with Gordon, McKenna, and Wendt (who was really a huge proponent in getting this film made, actually). There's also a good 14 minute featurette with the majors talking mostly about the story and each other (which unfortunately is rehashed in the commentary), and the trailer. No subtitles, though.