Bite Me! (2004)

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Overall Rating 53%
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Ranked #8,886
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When a hybrid strain of bio-engineered marijuana is delivered to a secluded strip club, it brings with it a monstrous army of insect creatures and a renegade U.S. federal agent with a big chip on his shoulder. Soon the stealthy, fist-sized bugs are busily engorging themselves on human blood, their bite effecting a particularly potent narcotic reaction in those attacked. --IMDb
Review by Chad
Added: August 31, 2006
Brett Piper is one of those directors that you'll either love or hate, and you can tell which side of the fence you happen to be on simply by watching the trailer for just one of his movies. The man doesn't attempt to make serious, shit-your-pants horror that also manages to throw in some social commentary; no sir, Piper makes low-budget movies that are both fun and funny. Take Bite Me!, for example: found within the ninety minute running time, you'll find giant spiders, strippers, bar-fights, urban legends, drugs, blood, gore, lesbian sex, and humongous Godzilla-themed buildings - and all of this takes place at a strip club called the Go-Go-Saurus. At this point in the review, I assume that most of you readers are probably about to click the exit button on your browser or head over to your retailer of choice to make a purchase, and personally, I suggest the latter.

At the aforementioned Go-Go-Saurus, owner Ralph Vivino (Michael R. Thomas) employs a trio of strippers - Crystal (Misty Mundae), the klutzy Trix (Erika Smith), and the stoner Amber (Caitlin Ross) - and works them like dogs, making them strip upwards of six times a night. This is because he happens to be one week away from losing his club, unless he can raise the cash required to pay off his former partner's widow Teresa (Julian Wells). He decides that these strippers aren't going to raise the needed cash in time, so he figures that getting into the drug business will help raise the cash quicker. Now, Ralph isn't the type of guy to just go out and sell some "normal" drugs; he decides to purchase two crates of highly-potent, genetically-enhanced marijuana that was created by the government for reasons that will be revealed later on in the movie. The plan is going good, up until we find out that there are huge, blood-sucking spiders making a home for themselves inside these crates, and they now happen to be loose in the strip club. Matters are complicated by a nosy DEA agent (John Fedele), an incompetent, borderline-retarded exterminator (Rob Monkiewicz), and a bar wench (Sylvianne Chebance) who can't seem to get enough of the men who pass through this joint.

For those of you not familiar with Piper's work, let me say that the man usually (and by usually, I mean "everything of his that I've seen") knows that he's working on b-movies and as such, he doesn't try to make it into anything more than that. There's no complex storylines or shocking twists to be found, but instead, you get plenty of humor and monsters. These movies certainly won't appeal to the stuffy art-house crowd out there, but those of you looking for a fun ninety minutes and some guaranteed laughs can't go wrong with Piper's work in general and Bite Me! in particular.

The effects found within this movie are quite good for the low-budget circuit, but be warned that those of you spoiled by the CGI usage of Hollywood may be disappointed by the creepy-crawlies found within this film. Piper makes extensive use of stop-motion animation and overlays, something that is really becoming a lost art in modern films. Personally, I enjoyed this and thought that they fit in with the campy nature of the film; I mean, c'mon, how can you not love a spider the size of a basketball that has an almost-human face and constantly screeches before sucking the blood out of a woman's nether regions? That's certainly not something you're going to see everyday, and that's the sort of thing that makes these films so enjoyable.

Once again, Piper also shows that he can pull some pretty surprising performances from his cast. Of course, Misty Mundae is great as always, but for fear of coming off as a complete and utter fanboy (which is true), I'll just leave it at that. The real surprise here comes from Rob Monkiewicz, who as you may recall, played the hunky hero in Screaming Dead. While I can't complain about his character portrayal there, it just wasn't anything really worth mentioning; he showed up, played his role, and that was that. Here, he plays the exterminator that just can't seem to make sense of what the people around him are saying to and about him. While I wouldn't go so far as to say that he plays a retard (excuse me, "mentally-challenged"), he does play a character that is, as the female of the house would say, dumber than a brick. While that sort of character has been done before, it makes for some damned hilarious scenes, and the interaction between Monkiewicz and Misty (and hell, everyone he comes into contact with) is just pure gold. John Fedele and Michael R. Thomas are no slouches in the comedy department either, with both managing to score some damned good laughs with their highly-entertaining characters.

This isn't the type of movie that you'd want to check out if you're looking for actual scare-you-silly horror, but if you're just wanting to kick back and relax with a movie that will easily make you lose track of an hour and a half and keep you laughing for the majority of that time, this is one that you should pick up immediately. 9/10.
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