Arachnophobia ★★★½

If this was called Melissophobia (i.e. if bees were swapped in for the eight-legged-freaks), I wouldn't touch it with a 10,000 foot pole.

While this would probably be true even before I actually watched Frank Marshall's film, I am damn sure of it now that I have. The way Marshall and his team heighten suspense by playing up the creepy imperceptibility of such tiny killers is often nerve-wracking and Jeff Daniels's palpable anxiety just takes it that much further. So much of this creature feature delivers the chills that many other such flicks have merely reached for. The combination of real spider footage (which is really impressive in its own right) and mechanical spider puppets in particular results in some stellar action that kept me glued to the screen for every second of this.

Story-wise, this kicks off brilliantly, drawing us into the spider mythos with gorgeous on-location table-setting and, thanks to some excellent pacing-focused cinematography and editing, it rarely slows down once it gets on the move. What else can I say? It's a skin-crawling delight and perfect viewing to ring in the official start of Spooky Season.

P.S. For some reason (don't ask me why), I had the thought that bug catcher Pokémon trainers would fervently call for a boycott of this film and that makes for yet another reason to laud this, in my opinion.

On an unrelated note, I'm obsessed with the "Pa Ti" song / short film and highly recommend it if you want to see two insanely hot people be insanely hot and insanely talented.

—🏰🧛‍♂️ Spooky Season 2020 Film #29 🧛‍♂️🏰—

HORRORx52 (2020)

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