Empire of the Ants

Overview

In the '50s, Bert I. Gordon made a career out of sci-fi movies about gigantic mutated insects Beginning of the End, Earth vs. the Spider, lizards King Dinosaur, Serpent Island, and even people The Amazing Colossal Man, and in 1977, he was still up to his old tricks with this picture, loosely adapted from a story by H.G. Wells. Marilyn Fryser Joan Collins is a less than scrupulous businesswoman who is trying to sell shares in a worthless Florida housing development to a group of naive souls. However, both Marilyn ...
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Overview

In the '50s, Bert I. Gordon made a career out of sci-fi movies about gigantic mutated insects Beginning of the End, Earth vs. the Spider, lizards King Dinosaur, Serpent Island, and even people The Amazing Colossal Man, and in 1977, he was still up to his old tricks with this picture, loosely adapted from a story by H.G. Wells. Marilyn Fryser Joan Collins is a less than scrupulous businesswoman who is trying to sell shares in a worthless Florida housing development to a group of naive souls. However, both Marilyn and her potential customers have bigger things to worry about than low property values, when they discover that a large stock of nuclear waste was dumped near the development site, and the result is a pack of gigantic mutated ants with a nasty disposition and a taste for human blood. The supporting cast features Robert Lansing, John David Carson, and Albert Salmi.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
Bert I. Gordon followed up on the success of Food Of The Gods with this equally goofball monster movie. The script refines the formula of Food Of The Gods, pitting a gaggle of diverse soap-opera stereotype characters against a menace straight out of 1950's nuclear-fear monster mash (in this case, Empire Of The Ants borrows directly from classic Them for its giant mutant ants). The dialogue is corny, the plotting is daft and the special effects are as antiquated as they are unconvincing. That said, Empire Of The Ants is actually quite entertaining for those in the right trash-craving frame of mind. Gordon's tidy direction keeps things rolling at a fast clip and his script's silliness is informed by a sense of humor about its contrivances that gives it some camp appeal. The sense of humor continues to the cast: Joan Collins hams it up in a way that suggest she is preparing for her later role on Dynasty and Robert Lansing informs his heroic role with a sarcastic, deadpan sensibility that makes him fun to watch. The film's third act also boasts a surprise twist that is so hilarious that it makes the film worth watching for b-movie fanatics all on its own. In short, Empire Of The Ants is low-rent schlock but that's okay because it's well aware of what it is and simply sets out to entertain those who are predisposed towards this sort of fun. Trash aficionados who like their monsters big and their plots goofy are sure to enjoy it.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/20/2001
  • UPC: 883904126669
  • Original Release: 1977
  • Source: Mgm (Video & Dvd)
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Joan Collins Marilyn Fryser
Robert Lansing Dan Stokely
John Carson Joe Morrison
Albert Salmi Sheriff Kincade
Jacqueline Scott Margaret Ellis
Pamela Shoop Coreen Bradford
Robert Pine Larry Graham
Edward Power Charlie Pearson
Brooke Palance Christine Graham
Tom Fadden Sam Russell
Irene Tedrow Velma Thompson
Harry Holcombe Harry Thompson
Jack Kosslyn Thomas Lawson
Ilse Earl Mary Lawson
Janie Gavin Ginny
Norman Franklin Anson Parker
Florence McGee Phoebe Russell
Mike Armstrong Jim
Technical Credits
Bert I. Gordon Director, Producer, Screenwriter, Special Effects
Samuel Z. Arkoff Executive Producer
Roy Downey Special Effects
Mel Efros Asst. Director
Joanne Haas Costumes/Costume Designer
Dana Kaproff Score Composer
Michael Luciano Editor
David McGiffert Art Director
Anthony C. Montenaro Set Decoration/Design
Reginald Morris Cinematographer
Charles Rosen Production Designer
Jack Turley Screenwriter
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Summer *Camp*

    Empire of the Ants is loosely based on a story *title* by H. G. Wells, rather than on the story itself. Right out the gate, that should tell you something about this movie. I remember hooting in the theater with my friends, especially when the frightened people, for comfort, began opening up candy bars to eat. ''Ohmigod, Lady,'' I squealed; ''Don't drop the wrapper!'' Robert Pine (Sgt. Getraer from the tv show CHiPs) is absolutely delicious as Larry the Coward, especially when his wife falls with a (what else?) sprained ankle and he has to decide whether to stay and help her or save himself. Absolutely priceless. This movie features my all-time favorite line from any flick. As the escapees are fleeing from the ants, they meet a Grant Wood-American Gothic type couple deep in the Florida Everglades, who warn them about the ants: ''Whatever you do, don't let them take you to the sugar refinery.'' Twenty-five years later, and I'm still giggling.

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