Growth won’t ask you out for a second date. It will f**k you and it won’t even give you the courtesy of a reach around – thank you Lee Ermy – It’s a one night stand that will wait until you’re asleep, steal your personal belongings and s**t in your mouth. It will wear your clothes and claim that it bought them itself, flat out lying to your face when you confront it.
It is a grotesque Frankenstein creation, uncountable limbs stapled onto a fleshy bag of animal organs and sewer muck.
Growth is not its own. Growth is a lab experiment. Its slithery subject matter is a strange parallel to the nature of its construction, a construction which scaffolds itself with the scattered ideas of better, more popular horror products.
Alarm bells begin to ring almost immediately.
The movie opens with a man, bloodied, running through the woods pursued by a group of armed assailants. This is a harmless horror staple, nothing that we haven’t seen before, but nothing directly borrowed from an obvious source.
However, soon enough we are violated by a ram shackle montage revealing the basic plot. Apparently, a small group of idiot scientists working in an isolated island community – alarm – develop a type of burrowing parasite – Alarm! – that lend their hosts super human abilities – Alarm! Alarm! – while they gradually devour them from the inside out – ALARM! ALARM!! F**KING ALARM!!! Resident Evil 4, anyone?
It just gets worse from there. In the penultimate finale an infected female character sits, stranded, in a boat with the baby she has sought to protect.
The only way to avoid the baby becoming a superhuman corpse is by leaping into the ocean and allowing its high salt content to dissolve her and her slug like inhabitants…
That’s right, she kills herself and her parasites with THE OCEAN: WORLD’S BIGGEST SLUG REPELLENT… The entire scene is made all the more ridiculous by baring such glaring and unabashed similarities with the ending from Children of Men.
Now, if I’m going to get really picky – and by god I will – then it’s hard to ignore the fact that this is just a humour free version of B-Movie slime fest, Slither.
Slither successfully blended its influences into a potent and enjoyable mix that resembled Society, Slugs! And The Blob but never hung a lantern on this.
Growth doesn’t so much hang a lantern on its influences; it flat out denies that it has any.
There’s a certain prickishness to this movie, a misdirected pride in itself. It’s like the smug jock, overachieving in the most banal of pursuits to hide the fact that he has a tiny penis and no personality traits of his own.
Beyond these shocking rip-offerys, the film manages to squeeze in some of the most bizarre dialogue this side of Dune. Early on, another pointless female protagonist arrives at an isolated cabin accompanied by her band of traveling morons. She reels off her predicted activities for the evening and in amongst these she adds ‘I just wanna play my accordion and go to bed’. I assumed, given my low state of engagement and high level of imagination, she meant that she wanted a quick wank before getting some shut eye. As it turns out, she really had an accordion…Over active imagination or not, that is very strange scripting, it’s the kind of line you’d expect in Scary Movie, not a genuine horror flick.
If the film makers couldn’t be bothered then why should their potential audience? To watch a rehashed series of genre sketches like this is woefully boring, it genuinely tires one out to sit through it. I would personally take an axe to every existing reel of Growth. I would, but that would be perceived as insane…