Definitely not the maddest story ever told, but still entertaining. I would not call this a horror story as much as I would a comedy. The acting felt immensely scripted and awkward at times, but I think that ultimately added to its overall quirky appeal. The black and white aesthetics in the setting of the creepy old house were very fitting and the goofy characters tied everything together nicely.
As intriguing as this film can get, it's got a lot of issues too. I liked the exploration of the Merrye family, but only because they're the only characters that have...well, character. The film has a tone problem as well: it's trying to shock, but then it doesn't seem to take itself very seriously. The humor is so awkwardly inserted, I'm not even sure which parts are supposed to intentionally silly.
Starts like the Addams Family meets the Texas Chainsaw Massacre and evolves (devolves?) into Eraserhead, the film is a classic of great, anything-goes horror. Shot on a $65,000 budget over three weeks, the laughs come from the fun that Hill had with his script. The teenage girls carry the day (the blonde was in Shane, who knew?). In a weird aside, Ohmart, who plays the lustful matron, left film to study metaphysics.
In spite of (or perhaps because of) the way the plot falls apart at the speed of light, an odd sort of charm and a genuine spookiness do emerge from the proceedings. It's especially amusing that the Merrye disease apparently turns its victims into wolfmen, given Lon Chaney's involvement. He, the setting, and the two sisters are really what make this movie worth watching. Unless you're in it for the camp, that is.
The best way to describe this film would be strange. Less of a horror film and more of a psychological thriller, 'Spider Baby' is not a film one could become disinterested in after starting it. Albeit an odd story line and quirky characters that are fairly unsettling, it was still intriguing. Interestingly enough, one would be remiss not to mention the occasional comic relief the film offers, if you enjoy dark humor.
I'm not much of a horror fan, but this was one of those films that makes you think about it for hours after. A very intriguing piece, showcasing Jack Hill's style with exploited personalities and an unexplainable 'weirdness'. I compared it immensly to "The Hills Have Eyes" and "The Adams Family", two great films that focus in on the creepiness versus overall quality of film and incorporate the main aspect of family.
Do you want to play Spider...? Spider Baby is a strange but intriguing film. With the plot being that of a strange family with distant relatives want to intrude on them, this is a film that has inspired many films that have come after it. This film was creepy and weird but with the clumsy acting and strange plot the film left you wanting more. If you like classic horror films this is one to watch.