The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Giant Insect Movie Marathon *

* (restored)

 

‘Beginning in the 1950s, golden-age Hollywood created a new film genre: the Big Bug Movie, a cross between science fiction, which mixed in pseudo-technical explanations to account for invasions of whatever giant insect happened to be the movie subject (ants, slugs, wasps, grasshoppers), and sheer horror. Although Hollywood had throughout the 1930s and 1940s given us horror and sci-fi flicks, those usually concerned creatures that were not real, such as giant apes or man-made monsters or tuxedo-clad vampires. (OK, raise your hands, everyone who’s met a real, honest-to-god werewolf; and we don’t mean the kind that whistles on sidewalk corners).

‘But bugs are different. Bugs are real. Bugs are common. Bugs are always with us (ask anyone who lives in a New York City apartment). And bugs are—not pretty. All right, maybe butterflies; we’ll grant you that. And little kids think ladybugs are cute. But what about spiders? Or a big, buzzing, blue-bottle fly? Do you really want those guys hanging around? And, truly, is there anyone who feels the slightest bit of empathy for a roach? No doubt about it—bugs are not warm and cuddly. But, we add with a sigh of relief, at least bugs are small. They may be nasty, but it’s not like dealing with a ravening horde of great, big—oh, say, brontosauruses. No, that’s not right; brontos may be big, but no one thinks they’re scary. All right, at least bugs are not like great, big, ravening hordes of—well, for instance, BIG bugs…

‘That, basically, was the concept behind the Hollywood Big Bug Movie: take a bug, make it the size of a brontosaurus, and see what fun results. And the results could be shockingly unpleasant. It’s one thing to pick a slug off a rose leaf; it’s another thing entirely when the slug picks you for breakfast. What was innovative about the Big Bug genre was how it went beyond mere horror; it brought in the Ick Factor. That’s not just the moment when viewers scream with fear. It’s when viewers squeeze their eyes shut and shriek, “Ewwww!” And what could cause an audience to do that? Obviously the sight of something…icky. And what could be ickier than Big Bugs? Bring on something that’s already cringe-inducing, like a tarantula; blow it up to three hundred times its size; let it loose in a populated area; throw in a close-up of slavering, buggy jaws; and what have you got?

‘But there was also the Horror. In just about every Big Bug Movie, we come to the scene where a white-jacketed scientist explains the Law of the Jungle: bugs live by eating everything in sight, including each other; Big Bugs will do the same, only on a much larger scale; this means that Big Bugs are going to eat—us. That’s right, we, the poor, innocent viewers, sitting passively in the theater, are the prey. To heighten the horror, the scientist often shows a film-within-the-film, of actual bugs actually eating—allowing our already overtaxed sensibilities to imagine that being done to ourselves. As one cinematic scientist explains, Big Bugs “use their mandibles to hold, rend, and tear their victims,” not a phrase to send us out into the sunshine thinking happy thoughts. The unfortunate reality is that Big Bugs are not our friends. No use protesting that, Uncle-Toby-like, you’ve never done any bug any harm and that you’ll gladly sign the anti-Raid pledge; the bug would merely pause, thoughtfully flick a six-foot long antenna, then scarf you down (and it would only pause because it was mentally calculating whether it could engulf you in one bite or two).

‘Why, though, did the Big Bug genre come of age in the 1950s? One reason, of course, was the Big Bomb. After the testing and use of the atomic bomb during World War Two, America became bomb-conscious. “When man entered the atomic age,” says one movie scientist, “he opened the door into a new world”—though he probably wasn’t thinking of giant grasshoppers being part of it. The development of the A-Bomb, and then the H-Bomb, as well as nuclear testing in the New Mexico desert, made Americans acutely aware of radiation and its effects. So many of the big bugs in Big Bug Movies become big due to mutations caused by radiation exposure. Giant insects can easily be interpreted as a metaphor of post-war nuclear anxiety: This is what happens when science goes too far. Although the irradiated Big Bug is always defeated by movie’s end, we’re still left with the uneasy feeling that, as many a bug-filled film darkly hints, who knows what may still lurk Out There, in the radiation-soaked Unknown.

‘But another reason for Big Bugs, however, may have been the 1950s emphasis on bigness itself. As a victorious military power enjoying a post-war economic boom, America seemed obsessed with Big Things: big business, machines, cars, houses, highways, movies (this, after all, was the age of Cinemascope)—even, ah, ladies (Mamie van Doren, Alison Hayes, Jane Russell, Jayne Mansfield, on an ascending scale …). So why not Big Bugs? After all, 1950s Hollywood was already giving us other big creatures, such as The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, The Giant Behemoth, The Amazing Colossal Man, and Attack of the Fifty-Foot Woman. So why not bring some of those scurrying critters from out under the sink and into the imaginative landscape of cinema, where even the lowly ant can conquer the world, at least temporarily.’ — GRAND OLD MOVIES

 

















































































 

Gordon Douglas Them! (1954)
The earliest atomic tests in New Mexico cause common ants to mutate into giant man-eating monsters that threaten civilization. Stars: James Whitmore, Edmund Gwenn, Joan Weldon, James Arness

 

Jack Arnold Tarantula (1955)
A spider escapes from an isolated desert laboratory experimenting in giantism and grows to tremendous size as it wreaks havoc on the local inhabitants. Stars: John Agar, Mara Corday, Leo G. Carroll, Nestor Paiva

 

Tony Randel Ticks (1993)
A group of troubled teenagers are led by social workers on a California wilderness retreat, not knowing that the woods they are camping in have become infested by mutated, blood-sucking ticks. Stars: Rosalind Allen, Ami Dolenz, Seth Green, Virginya Keehne

 

Frank Darabont The Mist (2007)
A freak storm unleashes a species of bloodthirsty creatures on a small town, where a small band of citizens hole up in a supermarket and fight for their lives. Stars: Thomas Jane, Marcia Gay Harden, Laurie Holden, Andre Braugher

 

Lorenzo Doumani Bug Buster (1998)
Killer oversized cockroaches swarm a small lakeside community. Stars: Randy Quaid, Brenda Epperson, Katherine Heigl, James Doohan

 

Tibor Takács Mansquito (2005)
A scientist and her subject turn into mutant insects. Stars: Corin Nemec, Musetta Vander, Matt Jordon, Patrick Dreikauss

 

J.R. Bookwalter Mega Scorpions (2003)
Residents of a half-way house are bombarded by 6 foot long killer scorpions. Stars: Nicolas Read, Marcella Laasch, Sewell Whitney, Sarah Megan White

 

Nathan Juran The Deadly Mantis (1957)
A giant prehistoric praying mantis, recently freed from the Arctic ice, voraciously preys on American military at the DEW Line and works its way south. Stars: Craig Stevens, William Hopper, Alix Talton, Donald Randolph

 

Kenneth G. Crane Monster from Green Hell (1958)
A scientific expedition in Africa investigates wasps that have been exposed to radiation and mutated into giant, killing monsters. Stars: Jim Davis, Robert Griffin, Joel Fluellen, Barbara Turner

 

Edward Ludwig The Black Scorpion (1957)
Volcanic activity frees giant scorpions from the earth who wreak havoc in the rural countryside and eventually threaten Mexico City. Stars: Richard Denning, Mara Corday, Carlos Rivas, Mario Navarro

 

Arnold Laven The Monster That Challenged the World (1957)
Giant mollusk monsters attack California. Stars: Tim Holt, Audrey Dalton, Hans Conried, Barbara Darrow

 

Bernard L. Kowalski Attack Of The Giant Leeches (1959)
A backwoods game warden and a local doctor discover that giant leeches are responsible for disappearances and deaths in a local swamp, but the local police don’t believe them. Stars: Ken Clark, Yvette Vickers, Jan Shepard, Michael Emmet

 

Peter Paul Basler Big Bad Bugs (2015)
After a convoy of American soldiers disappears, a special ops team is deployed to rescue them. They soon encounter an army of gigantic scorpions, spiders and snakes that have come to Earth from another dimension. Stars: Jack Plotnick, Sarah Lieving, Ted Jonas

 

Brett Piper Arachnia (2003)
When a small research plane carrying a group of science students and their professor crash-lands in the middle of nowhere, the survivors go to a nearby farmhouse to look for help but soon find themselves besieged by giant mutant spiders. Stars: Rob Monkiewicz, Irene Joseph, David Bunce, Bevin McGraw

 

Clark Brandon Skeeter (1993)
As the result of a corrupt businessman’s illegal toxic waste dumping, a small desert town is beset by a deadly swarm of huge bloodthirsty mutant mosquitoes! Stars: Tracy Griffith, Jim Youngs, Charles Napier, Jay Robinson

 

Gary Jones Mosquito (1995)
A violent massacre caused by human-sized mosquitoes forces the lone survivors to band together in a fight for survival as the mosquitoes continue their onslaught. Stars: Gunnar Hansen, Ron Asheton, Steve Dixon, Rachel Loiselle

 

Ed Raymond Glass Trap (2005)
When an army of radioactive ants are unknowingly carted into a skyscraper, a group of people have to find a way out before they’re eaten one by one. Stars: C. Thomas Howell, Stella Stevens, Siri Baruc, Brent Huff

 

Bert I. Gordon Empire of the Ants (1977)
A con artist tries to sell bogus real estate deals in an area overrun by giant ants. Stars: Joan Collins, Robert Lansing, John David Carson, Albert Salmi

 

Gilbert Gunn The Strange World of Planet X (1958)
A friendly visitor from outer space warns against conducting experiments with the Earth’s magnetic field, that could mutate insects into giant monsters. Stars: Forrest Tucker, Gaby André, Martin Benson, Alec Mango

 

William Fruet Blue Monkey (1987)
Detective Jim Bishop and Dr. Rachel Carson must find a way to stop a giant monstrous insect that’s eating people in her quarantined hospital before it procreates and spreads a deadly infection it’s carrying. Stars: Ivan E. Roth, Steve Railsback, Gwynyth Walsh, Don Lake

 

Ellory Elkayem Eight Legged Freaks (2002)
A variety of horrible poisonous spiders get exposed to a noxious chemical that causes them to grow to monumental proportions. Stars: David Arquette, Kari Wuhrer, Scott Terra, Scarlett Johansson

 

Bill Rebane The Giant Spider Invasion (1975)
Giant spiders from another dimension invade Wisconsin. Stars: Steve Brodie, Barbara Hale, Robert Easton, Leslie Parrish

 

Gregory Gieras Centipede! (2004)
A group of cave explorers are menaced by giant centipedes. Stars: Larry Casey, Margaret Cash, Trevor Murphy, George Foster

 

J.P. Simon Slugs (1988)
Killer slugs on the rampage in a rural community. Stars: Michael Garfield, Kim Terry, Philip MacHale, Alicia Moro

 

Bert I. Gordon Beginning of the End (1957)
Audrey Ames, an enterprising journalist, tries to get the scoop on giant grasshoppers accidentally created at the Illinois State experimental farm. She endeavors to save Chicago, despite a military cover-up. Stars: Peter Graves, Peggie Castle, Morris Ankrum

 

Paul Wynne Tail Sting (2001)
A pack of massive genetically altered Scorpions escape containment on an airplane, turning passengers into victims and forcing one ordinary woman to confront her worst fears. Stars: Laura Putney, Robert Merrill, Shirly Brener, Gulshan Grover

 

Tommy Withrow Scorpius Gigantus (2006)
Geneticist seeks to make a name for herself by saving the planet from disease by using eons-old antibodies, harvested from enlarged six legged creatures. The creatures don’t like being big and escape. Send for help. Stars: Jeff Fahey, Jo Bourne-Taylor, Hristo Mitzkov, Evgenia Vasileva


Watch the trailer here

 

Roger Corman The Wasp Woman (1959)
A cosmetics queen develops a youth formula from jelly taken from queen wasps. She fails to anticipate the typical hoary side- effects. Stars: Susan Cabot, Anthony Eisley, Barboura Morris

 

Jim Wynorski Wasp Woman (1996)
In this remake of the 1959 classic,the owner of a cosmetic company works with a Dr. that has been experimenting with a miracle cure for aging. He has extracted an enzyme from queen wasps that eventually change Janice into a giant insect. Stars: Jennifer Rubin, Doug Wert, Daniel J. Travanti, Melissa Brasselle

 

Tibor Takács Ice Spiders (2007)
When a young ski team training for the Olympics arrives at the remote and isolated Lost Mountain Ski Resort to focus on training… Stars: Patrick Muldoon, Vanessa Williams, Thomas Calabro, David Millbern

 

Kyle Rankin Infestation (2009)
A slacker awakes to find himself weak and wrapped in a webbing; after realizing that the world has been taken over by giant alien insects, he wakes a ragtag group of strangers and together they fight for survival. Stars: Chris Marquette, Brooke Nevin, Kinsey Packard

 

Joe Knee Dragon Wasps (2012)
A scientist enlists the help of the US army to investigate the mysterious disappearance of her father… Stars: Corin Nemec, Dominika Juillet, Nikolette Noel, Benjamin Easterday

 

Jeff O’Brien Insecticidal (2005)
Cami is a dedicated student of entomology that is researching insects in her sorority  house. When her sorority sister Josi sprays insecticide on her bugs, Cami becomes upset. But sooner she learns that the insects had grown bigger and bigger and she and her sisters are under siege by the insects. Further, Josi is the host of the breed of mutant insects that are very hungry. Stars: Meghan Heffern, Rhonda Dent, Travis Watters

 

Jack Perez Monster Island (2004)
Six friends win a vacation to the Bermuda Triangle and become trapped with only an MTV Crew to help keep them alive. They have to rescue Carmen Electra escape while they all battle the monsters on Monster Island. Stars: Carmen Electra, Daniel Letterle, Mary Elizabeth Winstead

 

 

*

p.s. Hey. ** _Black_Acrylic, Hi, Ben. Yes, France is making sure that we’re all aware that the World Cup is imminent and that France intends to kicks the rest of the world’s ass too, of course. Since I feel rather detached from the whole thing, I’ll join you in saying, ‘Go Wales!’ ** h now j, Hi. It’s very interesting: his book. It’s true that the sunlight in LA is very particular and special. I forget that until everything is bathed in it again. Very happy to hear you’ll soon have time for your own things. And I hope it’s at least somewhat extensive time. Happy birthday to Jean Painlevé, whom I should really make a post about. I hope your weekend rules, or you rule it. ** Daniel James Taylor, Hi there. Welcome! Ha ha, thank you. If I could retroactively slap that sentence on the cover of ‘The Sluts’, I would. How are you? What’s up? ** Tosh Berman, Oh, I somehow missed your commentary on the Clementi book. Awesome, on it. Everyone, The eminent Mr. Everything Tosh Berman wrote about Mr. Clementi’s book of yesterday on his Substack, and you can (and surely should) read it here. ** Misanthrope, Hi, G. As I’ve just now passed out of my jet lag, your welcome back is actually still current. I trust you greatly enjoyed that mega- double bill last night. ** David Ehrenstein, Indeed! ** T. J., Hey, T. J.! How are you? How have you been? There’s a DVD compilation of Clementi’s directorial films put out by Re:Voir that I highly recommend if you do DVDs. ** Dominik, Hi!!! Oh, yes, I guess that isn’t a surprise, come to think of it. There was this website for a while that published only one sentence reviews of books, and it was great, but I think it got killed off. Do let me know how (and what) ‘82189: Confessions of a Prison Bitch’ is once you’ve read it. Love wishing my QAnon believing, Trump loving, anti-vax, conspiracy theory ranting younger brother happy birthday for me today so I don’t have to, G. ** Bill, Hi. Clementi’s a superhero. I saw a screening of the newly restored ‘In the Shadow of the Blue Rascal’, introduced by his son Balthazar, while I was in LA, and it’s amazing, and its score is incredible. ** Jamie, Hi. Big support for your plan to watch Clementi’s films and read him, natch. Oh, hm, as to which of my novels would make the most sense to me as a board game, … well, ‘TMS’ would require an insanely difficult to realise board, but that is quite an idea there. Otherwise, maybe ‘Period’ for some reason? It’s true if I had come to Herzog’s work after he became the kooky pop culture icon he is today, I might have had a real trepidations. No, I didn’t see the Marclay yet. The Pompidou is doing a Simon Leung film retrospective, so I’ll try to time my visit with a screening. Yay, victoire, about your novella turnover. Best feeling ever, no? Um, this weekend I have my biweekly Zoom ‘book club’, and I’m going to hang with Stephen O’Malley, I think, and I might try to work on some fiction, and we just set up a Notion workspace for our film that I need to fill in, and whatever else. I hope we both come back from our respective two days flush. 90% gluten love, Dennis. ** Sypha, Worth your time. I’m honestly wishing I could go back in time and make a documentary film about you and your family playing that corrupted ‘LotR’ board game. Wow. ** Steve Erickson, As I said above, I saw a screening of ‘In the Shadow of the Blue Rascal’ in LA and adored it. It’s Clementi’s most narrative film by far. Your Clementi playlist link led to Brockhampton, which was kind of trippy. Curious to read you on ‘Bones and All’. Everyone, Steve has weighed in on Timothee Chalamet’s cannibal movie here, and on Brockhampton’s new, final album here. ** Robert, Hi, Robert! I’ve been allergic to the New Yorker since I was knee-high to a grasshopper. With notable exceptions, the kind of ‘literary’ fiction it promotes could die a gruesome death, and I’d be fine with that. Well, I probably don’t need to tell you that it’s a lot easier to live a life as an artist in France than it is in the US. They have government artist subsidies and stuff here. I don’t know how to advise you to ace that heavy work schedule vs. writing conundrum, but I hope you find a way. Your addiction to writing will surely help if not even eventually tip the balance. Helluva dream there. I never remember mine, and, when I do, it’s always just me being chased by someone who’s trying to kill me. I’m doing okay. No, I hated Thanksgiving even when I was living in the US, and it’s persona non grata here happily. Are you doing it up? ** Paul Curran, Thank you, Paul! Trip was all it was meant to be. Do I have #1? Maybe. I bet Michael does. And I bet he didn’t bury it in a chateau’s walls, the bastard. Love from me. How’s your J-Pop novel? ** malcolm, Hi, m. I went in a shoe store here the other day with a friend who was buying shoes, and I recognised the guy who helped my friend pick out her shoes as an escort from my escort site trawling, and I tried not to let my face reveal that I recognised him, but I think he could tell I had because he gratuitously gave me his card when we were leaving with a wink. I always wanted to work in a record store. I’m very romantic about that job, and you’ve only reinforced that. Nice. However, those are a lot of work hours to work around. And yet you’re so productive. Awesome about the film progress and scoring the mom. Is the dad a complicated character? We have a complicated dad in our new film, but I think we’ve got our dude to be him. Wasn’t easy. We shoot ours in March. How long is your shoot? We’re hoping for 25 days for ours, funds allowing. I hope your weekend is supreme, sir. ** Right. I think maybe it was my recent bout with jet lag and its consequences on my brain, but I decided it was a good or at least fun idea to restore this big, silly old post for you this weekend. See you on Monday.

15 Comments

  1. Dominik

    Hi!!

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a giant insect movie. Not a single one. I used to be so scared of insects I didn’t even dare touch photos of them. I’m not so freaked out anymore, only when it comes to huge spiders – and only in real life. (Still, I probably won’t look up some of the above gems, haha.)

    Ugh, that… sounds like quite a difficult family situation. I wish love could make that phone call for you indeed! Love accidentally finding the Instagram account of WokeBlond from your latest escort post and wondering whether the escort listing is really his or someone just used his pictures, Od.

  2. malcolm

    hi dennis! love the insects. and that’s funny about the shoe store escort.

    yeah, the dads a complicated character. he’s the main character, the whole script is pretty much from his perspective. he’s a man who’s struggling with depression, whether or not he wants to admit it. a man trying to bond with his son, even though he doesn’t know the best way to go about that. i wrote the role with ethan hawke in mind (he visits nova scotia often, i know a few people that know him personally, i feel like casting him could actually happen if i’m given the budget for a full length version. he’s been in so many indie films, he really *loves* to act). most of the men here are not the ethan hawke type. they’re all funny guys with strong cape breton accents.

    i think the thing that will decide if the film is good or not is the dads performance. i want this to do well, i want it to takes me places – i need the ethan hawke money! so i have to be really careful in my casting of that role.

    the final version of the script is looking like it’ll be 15 pages, about 6 scenes. hopefully only a 2 or 3 day shoot. we’ll be shooting at my parents place, in cape breton, a 2.5 hour drive away from where we are now (halifax), and we’ve all got work, school, etc to attend.

    i’ll be off to work in a bit (record store today, thank god), and then tomorrow i finally have a day off, my first since monday. gonna spend it learning how to make fake wounds out of liquid latex. lots of fun. have a good day, see you tomorrow

  3. David Ehrenstein

    The original version of “TheFly” is my favoeite.

  4. Ian

    Hey Dennis. Idk if space insects count, but if so I would like to nominate Starship Troopers. A wonderful war satire with a lot of hot bods.
    Happy to see, based on yr comments, that the trip to LA was a success. Congrats.
    Did you get a chance to check out the novel Cialis, Verdi, Gin, Jag?
    We just had our first cold/snowy week in mtl. From the top of my work site we can see across the entire city. It looked beautiful with the fresh snow.
    Anywho, just wanted to say hello and let you know its great to have the blog back.
    Caio,
    Ian

  5. Sypha

    I’ve seen a few of the older original ones of these, like TARANTULA and THEM! (the latter of which I once sampled on a Sypha Nadon song). They used to play them in the afternoon on Saturdays when I was a kid: well, usually it was GODZILLA-type films, but every now and then they did a “Big Bug” movie. I didn’t mind, so long as it had monsters in it, I was happy!

    One thing I remember about the LOTR game was we actually were a bit peeved about our dad putting in those foreign pop culture elements because it kind of broke “canon” and took one out of the worldbuilding (it didn’t help matters that he got some of the character’s catchphrases wrong as well, ha ha).

  6. David Ehrenstein

    Oliver Sacks

  7. Misanthrope

    Dennis, I did! However, eek. Everyone will hate me for this. This tour is a co-headlining event, so they alternate opening/closing every show. Well, Suede opened last night…and then we split (as did about half the crowd). Yes, I’m a bum. Thing is, Kayla, David, and DR didn’t know MSP at all, and I’m not that familiar with their stuff though my Neo-Decadent friends LOVE them. But what I’ve listened to…I’m not that big on them. I know, I know. Plus, nobody had eaten since like noon and everyone was hungry. So we went to eat.

    Really fucked up thing is the my friend DR parked in this garage he thought was free…and ended up not being free. He got a parking violation for parking there and a $60 fine. That’s more than the ticket. Oof.

    But Suede was awesome, duh. Very high energy and nonstop for a little over an hour. Poor Brett can’t quite hit the notes he used to, so on this acoustic version of “The Wild Ones,” his voice really gave out at the end. He laughed and was like, “Okay, I fucked that up.” But the rest was awesome. The did a couple songs that surprised me, as I hadn’t seen them on any of the other shows’ set lists.

    Yeah, I loved it. A great time.

    Funny thing about these giant insect movies is that I have a feeling most people are probably more scared of little insects. But I could be wrong, I usually am.

  8. Bill

    Ha, I loved big bug flicks when I was a kid. I’ve seen one of the mantis movies, and maybe a few others.

    Nice review of Bones and All, Steve. And I see there’s already a trolling comment.

    Caught an interesting dance performance by Jess Curtis’ group Gravity. The first 15+ minutes of the piece was in pitch darkness, using spatialized sounds effectively to give a sense of space and movement. I think it’s traveling to Berlin next year, and maybe elsewhere in Europe.

    Bill

  9. Steve Erickson

    Oops! That’s a telling mistake, because the Brockhampton album might be even more disenchanted with fame and the music industry than LES IDOLES. Anyway, here’s the actual playlist of Pierre Clementi’s performances: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyXAzksYZ9w&list=PLD20C02F2882D8838&ab_channel=LesIdoles

    The Pavement musical is being workshopped, so the December performances are probably elaborate dress rehearsals. I do want to see it, though I’m very skeptical, once the final version makes it to theaters. I’m seeing a K-pop-inspired Broadway musical (with original songs) on Dec. 1st. I’ve long thought the K-pop aesthetic would be a great fit for that world, so I’m very curious.

  10. Bob

    Hi Dennis, this post made me think of Thomas Disch’s (ordinary-sized) “The Roaches”, which returned me to old melancholy about his absence from our world. I wonder what thoughts you’ve had of him and his work?

    (I’ll also note Ned Rorem’s recent passing – perhaps you’ve encountered his notorious “Paris Diary”.)

  11. Gick

    Hi Dennis, I’ve been meaning to write to you for a few days now to thank you for your insight regarding my health issue; I haven’t told many people about my cystuation, as I have this weird shame and mad fear of being unwell… TBH I don’t even know why I told you, but thank you; I think we are both right, and I’m better off taking it out asap. But the night you wrote that insightful, kind note to me, I was so exhausted that I sort of blacked out as soon as I got home; I did have a dream about you though, which was absolutely beautiful. I also wanted to say your new posts are absolutely killing it! Pierre Clémenti’s book sounds divine & necessary, I can’t wait to read it! Board games? My childhood sweetheart. Your package will be on its way to you next week. Keep rocking, my gorgeous friend.

  12. Paul Curran

    Dennis, love the bug marathon! There must be a million bands with insect-related names.

    J-Pop novel popping along, thanks, although the current method is kind of like raking gravel in one of those temple gardens, going back and forth and inching forward or around in circles. Speaking of post-Hiroshima monster movies, Toho studios (Godzilla/Seven Samurai) is just down the river from where the Setagaya murders happened, and the film House was made there too (Ultraman street is also nearby, home of Tsuburaya Productions – he did special effects on Godzilla), so I’ve been trying to connect some of those fictional dots.

    Btw, did the Bloodbath package arrive..?

  13. Jamie

    Hey Dennis,
    I hope your weekend plans unfurled nicely. How was it? My unplanned weekend was quiet, but kind of what I was in the mood for and I got some more novella editing done. And yes, the realisation that the part of my novel had gone from poor to not bad was indeed excellent.
    Thankyou for the gift of the Giant Insect Movie Marathon! I initially wondered if I’d watch any of these things, but after scrolling through the gifs I thought I might well. Also, I was surprised how many of the titles above were modern or fairly modern. I’d thought that giant insect movies were a thing of yesteryear, and that they still seem be a going concern gave me cheer, for some reason. Have you watched many of those in the post? I suppose giant insect movies are pretty much disaster movies, right?
    Hope all’s well with you a Paris.
    Melting eyes love,
    Jamie

  14. _Black_Acrylic

    I’m no connoisseur of giant insect movies but did enjoy this marathon. I remember loving Cronenberg’s Fly remake as a teen and woud have thought it stands up well.

    Happy to report that today my first bookshelf was installed at my new flat. All the books are in a random order, though that could still change. My friend Ruth reports that she would sort them all by size or colour, which is not a system that I would have any truck with.

  15. Brian

    Hey, Dennis,

    What a perfect post to ring the death knell of your jet lag! I’ve seen “The Giant Spider Invasion”, which I adore if only for the cheap joke of the title (contrary to what you might expect, the singular “Spider” is all you get). I’m glad to comment again and even gladder to hear that your trip to LA seems to have been fruitful, or at the very least satisfying. Shooting in March! What excitement! And how are things more generally? I’ve been busy and busier with schoolwork, but have still found time for ample aesthetic pleasure: lately, in literature, that has meant Lucia Berlin (what a stunning prose artist!) and Friedrich Nietzsche; in film, Ozu and the Evangelion movies, all of which are bouncing off of each other in bizarre and interesting ways. Beyond that the usual banalities (half-hearted job hunting, eating disorder trouble) and joys (friends, family, activity) as always. I hope the week ahead glitters before you like the Yellow Brick Road.

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