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King of the Ants

Overview

Touted as something of a return-to-form for Re-Animator director Stuart Gordon, King of the Ants offers the brutal tale of a man discovering his previously untapped potential for violence. Despite the fact that his future seems relatively undefined, young drifter Sean Crawley Chris McKenna is an easygoing guy who makes a meager living by painting houses. When electrician Duke Wayne George Wendt suggests that the naïve young painter could make more money if he could expand his horizons, an eager Sean takes him up ...
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Overview

Touted as something of a return-to-form for Re-Animator director Stuart Gordon, King of the Ants offers the brutal tale of a man discovering his previously untapped potential for violence. Despite the fact that his future seems relatively undefined, young drifter Sean Crawley Chris McKenna is an easygoing guy who makes a meager living by painting houses. When electrician Duke Wayne George Wendt suggests that the naïve young painter could make more money if he could expand his horizons, an eager Sean takes him up on the offer and Duke introduces Sean to local construction magnate Ray Mathews Daniel Baldwin. Ray quickly enlists Sean's assistance in trailing a local city accountant whose number crunching is beginning to make the crooked construction heavy uncomfortable, and it's not long before Ray asks Sean to carry out a hit on the overzealous accountant. Although Ray and Duke subsequently attempt to distance themselves from the crime, Sean's attempt to collect on the hit results in a brutal attempt on the amateur hit man's life. Though he is beaten to within inches of death, Sean makes an unexpectedly speedy recovery fueled by an unquenchable thirst for revenge.
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Special Features

Featurette; Director/actor commentary; Trailer; Previews
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jason Buchanan
Eschewing the fantasy-based Lovecraftian horrors of Re-Animator and Dagon for a decidedly stark meditation on day-to-day violence, longtime director Stuart Gordon successfully shifts gears, and the results are a compelling but often unpleasant psychological revenge drama. As the viewer becomes acquainted with naïve young house painter Sean Chris McKenna, suspicions regarding his dubious morality and determination to succeed no matter what the cost are slowly cemented though a series of thoughts and actions, including his eager willingness to at first trail -- and ultimately murder -- a nosey city hall accountant. It's a testament to Gordon's skills as a filmmaker -- and essential to the success of the film itself -- that despite Sean's questionable character the audience is still able to identify with him even after he has obviously crossed the line and opted for the slow road to hell. Of course, one can't lay all of the praise for the effectiveness squarely on the shoulders of the filmmaker, and his talented cast was no doubt up to the challenging task of making the characters who draw him into his newfound world of violence as reprehensible as possible. Daniel Baldwin couldn't have been a better choice to cast as Ray, the sleazy building contractor who lures young Sean in with a drunken promise of 13,000 dollars for the hit; and any pleasant memories of a bar "where everybody knows your name" will soon be obliterated from viewers memories forever thanks to George Wendt's performance as Ray's sadistic henchman Duke. As harrowing scenes of torture slowly turn into surreal hallucinations and the tables are eventually turned, the catharsis of witnessing Sean's recovery including a cruel twist of fate regarding his former victim's wife and seeing the ruthless bunch get what's coming to them quickly falls by the wayside when, in the films closing moments, he reveals the bleak philosophical motivation behind his chilling transformation. A far cry from Gordon's previous efforts to be sure, but a more thematically mature effort that without question points to exciting things to come from the veteran director.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/6/2009
  • UPC: 687797603548
  • Original Release: 2003
  • Rating:

  • Source: Millennium
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Special Packaging
  • Language: English
  • Time: 1:43:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 29,382

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Chris L. McKenna Sean Crawley
Kari Wuhrer Susan Gatley
Daniel Baldwin Ray Mathews
George Wendt Duke Wayne
Timm Sharp George
Vernon Wells Beckett
Ron Livingston Eric Gatley
Lionel Mark Smith Carl
Carlie Westerman Catlin Gatley
Shuko Akune Meade Parks
Ian Williams Tony
Technical Credits
Stuart Gordon Director, Co-producer
Mac Ahlberg Cinematographer
John Bordeaux Special Effects
Dennis Grzesik Sound/Sound Designer
Duffy Hecht Producer
Charlie Higson Co-producer, Screenwriter
Bobby Johnston Score Composer
Shannon Kemp Art Director
David Michael Latt Cinematographer, Editor, Producer
John Martigan Special Effects
Monika Mikkelsen Casting
George Moes Production Designer
Optic Nerve Makeup Special Effects
David Rimawi Executive Producer
Scott Senechal Asst. Director
Shawn Simons Associate Producer
Stacy Stagnaro Costumes/Costume Designer
Sherri Strain Executive Producer
George Wendt Co-producer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- King of the Ants
1. Opening Credits [1:23]
2. Have a Dream? [2:35]
3. Something for You [2:55]
4. Surveillance [5:46]
5. How Far? [7:18]
6. Don't Be Stupid [6:22]
7. Long Way Home [2:26]
8. You're An Insect [4:17]
9. They Owe Me [1:53]
10. Van Ride [3:28]
11. The Shed [2:47]
12. Forget [6:04]
13. Dementia [4:51]
14. First Aid [2:57]
15. Escape [6:31]
16. Homeless [4:45]
17. Hardly Recognize [2:14]
18. Moving IN [3:45]
19. Family Man [4:16]
20. Look Familiar [6:17]
21. Finish This [4:54]
22. Where Is He? [4:18]
23. What I Do [4:27]
24. End Credits [5:24]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- King of the Ants
   Scene Selections
   Special Features
      Director/Actor Commentary
      Featurette
      Trailer
      Previews
         It's Alive
         Infestation
         Monster
         Trauma
         Crazy As Hell
   Set Up
      English 2.0 Dolby Stereo
      Español 2.0 Dolby Stereo
   Play Movie
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