Well today we have a special treat for you! Arachnid double feature day. 2 movies stand out when it comes to spiders, the 1955 Sci-fi classic Tarantula and a more recent addition, Acrahnophobia, with none other than the funny John Goodman. Hope you enjoy both movies.
Tarantula (1955) Sci-Fi Classic
This Movie leads off with a biological researcher, Professor Gerald Deemer who is attempting to stop food shortages which will result from the world's expanding population. With the help of atomic science, he creates a nutrient for animals, but this nutrient causes them to grow to epic proportions. In his laboratory, he houses several large, over grown rodents and, a tarantula.
After his researchers sample the nutrient, they are driven to madness due to the nutrient, resulting in the researchers freeing the rodents and the tarantula. In all the madness, a researcher attacks Professor Deemer and injects him with the nutrient, resulting in Deemer becoming deformed while the now gigantic tarantula ravages the local countryside.
A concerned doctor and Professor Deemer's assistant investigate the mystery of the clean picked cattle bones and the eight-foot wide pools of Tarantula venom. After destroying everything in its path and several failed attempts, by a napalm attack launched from a fighter squadron, the giant Tarantula is eventually destroyed,
The Movie poster, featured a tarantula with two eyes instead of the normal eight
Real animals (including a rabbit and a guinea pig in Professor Deemer's lab) being used to represent the giant creatures.
A real Tarantula was also used for shots where the whole spider was shown and models used for close-ups.
Arachnophobia (1990) Horror
A group of scientists, led by entomologist Dr. James Atherton (Julian Sands), head to the Amazon with the hope of discovering new species of insects. The scientists identify a new species of spider, which is pretending to be dead and carries a type of venom that causes near-instantaneous death to its victims. The spider is captured and chloroformed for research. They learn that the spider is a soldier. A nature photographer Jerry Manley takes a rest under the tree where the spider was found, and the 'general' spider jumps into his backpack, later sneaking into his sleeping bag and killing him with a bite to his hand. The remainder of the scientists take his body back to the US, with the original spider from Venezuela) inside, blaming Jerry's death on fever.
Jerry's body arrives at the morgue in his home town, Canaima, and the mortician doesn't notice the general spider inside the coffin when he opens it. As the mortician is speaking on the phone with Jerry's family about funeral arrangements, the general heads outside. It eventually makes its way to the barn of the Jennings family. Ross Jennings is a family physician, who had moved to the small town from San Francisco, and faces a lack of patients due to elderly rival Sam Metcalf, who was supposed to retire and shift his patients to Ross.
The general spider mates with a domestic house spider and makes a nest in Jennings's barn, producing a queen, then mates with the queen and makes a second nest on the family's basement. Hundreds of soldier spiders are born in the barn. Ross, along with his son, has an arachnophobia (fear of spiders), making them targets of ridicule among their family. His first patient, Margaret Hollins dies after being bitten, which the town's residents believe was a heart attack. After a football player is also killed by a spider, Ross is known to the town as Dr. Death, because each of his patients dies after having seen him.
Soon, Metcalf himself is killed by a spider, giving Ross the idea that the town could be infested by deadly arachnids. After Ross perform an autopsy with the town's coroner Milton Briggs on the victims and confirms his suspicion, he, along with Dr. Atherton, his assistant Chris Collins, Briggs, Sheriff Lloyd Parsons, and exterminator Delbert Mclintock investigate and eventually discover that the killer spiders are descendants of the new species Atherton discovered earlier. Dr. Atherton is killed by the general after he discovers the primary nests' location and disturbing its web. After Ross, Chris, and Delbert trace the nests to Jennings' own property, Ross sends Delbert to destroy the first nest at the barn while he and Chris try to help the family escape from their own house, now infested with deadly spider offspring.
Ross's wife, his children, and Chris make it out, but Ross finds himself trapped until he falls through the basement into the spiders' second nest. After killing the queen, Ross battles with the general, in the process setting the cellar on fire. With the general about to deliver the killing strike, Ross sets the spider on fire, but it continues to pursue him. Ross shoots it with a nail gun and the projectile sends the burning spider to the nest's egg sac, effectively destroy the nest by burning it and ending the plague. Delbert is able to reach Ross and get him to safety. Having enough of the country along with the near-death experience, the Jennings family immediately move back to San Francisco, appreciating city life once more.
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