NOTE: Hello readers – Mike Smith here. My apologies for the late posting of this review. It should have been posted over a week ago and I completely skipped over it.
- TREMORS: SHRIEKER ISLAND
- Starring: Michael Gross, Jon Heder
- Directed by: Don Michael Paul
- Rated: Unrated
- Running time: 1hr 43 mins
- Universal 1440 Entertainment
No one could’ve predicted in 1990 that TREMORS, a box office flop that was essentially a rip-off of JAWS about sandworms would still be birthing sequels thirty years later. Yet, here we are in 2020 with the seventh installment in the franchise and a cult following that mostly doesn’t find the need to pass judgment no matter how bad the CGI gets nor how crazy the plotlines get. That fact will remain true beyond the release of Tremors: Shrieker Island. You either celebrate Burt Gummer or you’ll never voluntarily watch this film.
In this latest adventure with underground monsters, a billionaire hunter (Richard Brake) has begun shipping Graboids out to a private island for a group of wealthy outdoorsmen, a twisted spin on The Most Dangerous Game. When things inevitably go wrong, Burt Gummer (Michael Gross) is once again called in to save the day.
If you were a fan of the original Tremors and have been put off by the direct to video vibes the franchise have given, I may suggest now is the time to return for maximum time investment payoff. Although missing still are the charming practical effects of earlier installments, Shrieker Island is a hard divergence from the lighter atmosphere of Burt’s more recent battles with these monsters.
Frequently referential of Jurassic Park and Predator and, I can’t believe I’m writing this, Jaws: The Revenge… Shrieker Island borrows the dark bits and pieces of a lot of familiars and delivers a solidly entertaining adventure. Yes, you’ll need to suspend disbelief. Yes, this might be senseless cash grab. No, you’re not getting any side character development. Yes, Burt Gummer is still one of the greatest heroes ever and so no, you won’t care about any of the above.
The Tremors universe has gifted us with a bevy of wild creatures beyond the 1990 film’s original Graboid. Here you’ll get the biggest and messiest of them, with more modifications and maybe a score to settle? While his casting announcement initially prompted eye rolls from many, “Napoleon Dynamite” star Jon Heder aides in grooming a surprisingly nice dynamic alongside Michael Gross who is as outrageous as ever and, sometimes, surprisingly emotional.
Tremors: Shrieker Island will be available on Digital, Blu-ray, DVD and On-Demand on October 20th 2020.