The film begins at the start of deer season in tiny Wheelsy, a community composed mostly of rednecks, has-beens and never-weres. The town's big fish is Grant Grant (
The film's tone -- a mixture of uncomfortable violence and disarming humor -- owes a lot to the work of Frank Henenlotter ("Basket Case"), Stuart Gordon ("Re-Animator"),
Although it looks proudly low budget, "Slither" uses a combination of practical effects and CG to generate the necessary visceral reactions. The glistening leaches are far and away the most successful invention, which explains why they're the centerpiece of the movie's promotion despite the fact that only appear in a couple isolated scenes.
Nearly as important are the game cast members, particularly Fillion and Henry. "Firefly" fans have long embraced Fillion's ability to infuse any dialogue, however incidental, with deadpan quirk. Henry, best known for telling poor Rory she wasn't cut out for journalism on
Gunn's inexperience is evident in both the flat staging of some scenes and in the meandering and unfocused plot. Bouncing all over the map, "Slither" doesn't build any tension as a zombie movie, a creature feature or as a sci-fi creepfest and the lack of a throughline make it a series of enjoyable bits, rather than a satisfying whole.