They Bite – USA, 1992

They-Bite-horror-movie-Brett-Piper-1996

‘They live… They suck…’

They Bite is a 1992 [released 1996] American science fiction comedy horror film written and directed by Brett Piper (The Screaming Dead; Drainiac!; Queen Crab). It stars Donna Frotscher, Nick Baldasare and Christina Veronica.

The film follows a similar premise to the plot of Roger Corman-produced horror exploitation classic, Humanoids from the Deep (1980), in depicting sea creatures coming to shore and attacking and mating with humans, but also contains the idea of a film-within-a-film device.

They-Bite-4

An adult movie crew are on location making Invasion of the Fishf*ckers – which happens to be a story about sea creatures coming ashore and attacking and mating with humans.

They-Bite-5

Whilst they are making the film coincidentally the very thing they’re filming seems to be happening around them. Thus, there’s a blurring between reality and fiction…

They-Bite-2

Reviews:

” …easily the best fish-on-the-attack flick I’ve ever seen that contains: Ron Jeremy buying groceries (he even makes that look filthy); a wet t-shirt contest that turns into a catfight then bar fight then killer fish creature attack; nifty desiccation effects; a mock trailer for Invasion of the Fish F*ckers; and tons of B-movie references.” Exploitation Retrospect

“We’re talking trashy fun here, the sort of film where the monsters attack just as the cat fight breaks out at the wet t-shirt contest […] But it is also a knowingly trashy film, which winks at the audience and lets us in on the joke, and revels in being part of an often silly and exploitative sub-genre of the monster movie.” Mark Cole, Rivets on the Poster

“It’s more fun than it probably sounds, and although there are appropriate homages to Monster from the Surf and Horror of Party Beach, Piper avoids the self-referential trap into which scores of low-budget horror spoofs have fallen. This movie stands on its own, although it is stuck in somewhat of a no-win niche, with too little sex and nudity for the skin-flick crowd, and too much racy material for the goofy comedy crowd.” Robert Firsching, AllMovie

“While it’s immensely knowing about its B-movie forebears, it establishes its own sense of humor, and is marked by clever writing and some very witty dialogue. Nor does Piper play his monster scenes for intentional cheesiness. Though the sea creature suits — designed by Piper himself, without credit — aren’t quite state of the art, the sea creatures’ attacks are handled with an effectively straight face.” TV Guide

“I’m not quite sure why Piper opted for such an odd p*rn filmmaker vs. fish doc set up – complete with the goofy “you got my mail” happenstance – that occasionally drags the film down as it splinters into odd directions. The truth is the scattershot plot, which also includes some religious zealots, hurts the film at times when a straight up “monsters attack the locals” would have been sufficient.” William  S. Wilson, Video Junkie

They-Bite-1996-MTI-VHS-cover

“An uncomplicated aliens-on-Earth-eating-people item which has a good sense of humor about itself, and features some very inventive monsters and a goodly amount of ribald chuckles. Production values and acting are mostly above the equator for this type of fare, and some of the special effects moments demonstrate surprising ingenuity and aptitude.” Eye Askance

Choice dialogue:

Hey, we’re trying to do something a bit different here. We’re not just making a regular muff movie!”

“I saw that movie once. It was called Horror of Party Beach.”

[sound of thunder] “Great! Now all we need is Vincent Price.”

Main cast:

  • Donna Frotscher
  • Nick Baldasare
  • Christina Veronica
  • Charlie Barnett
  • Ron Jeremy – Getting SchooledPoultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead; Bloody Bloody Bible Camp; One-Eyed MonsterSorority Party Massacre; Dracula Exotica
  • George Mazzone
  • Alex Pirnie
  • Patrick Williams
  • Susie Owens
  • Roy A. Peddle
  • Blake Pickett
  • Jeremy Steele

Release:

Briefly released on VHS in the United States by MTI in 1996, the film is currently unavailable on DVD.

Filming locations:

  • New Hampshire, USA
  • Panama City, Florida, USA

WikipediaIMDb | Image credits: Video Junkie

 

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Categories: 1990s, alien, comedy horror, science fiction

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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