Squirm – 1976
An avalanche of killer worms…writhing across the land in a tidal wave of terror!
Joseph Beruh executive producer
Edgar Lansbury executive producer
George Manasse producer
Don Scardino – Mick
Patricia Pearcy – Geri Sanders
R.A. Dow – Roger Grimes
Jean Sullivan – Naomi Sanders
Peter MacLean – Sheriff
Fran Higgins – Alma Sanders
William Newman – Quigley
Barbara Quinn – The Sheriff’s Girl
Carl Dagenhart – Willie Grimes
Angel Sande – Millie
Carol Jean Owens – Lizzie
Kim Iocouvozzi – Hank
Walter Dimmick – Danny
Leslie Thorsen – Bonnie
Julia Klopp – Mrs. Klopp
Ralph Flanders – 1st Man at Lunch Counter
Albert Smith – 2nd Man at Lunch Counter
Jim Shirah – 3rd Man at Lunch Counter
Harold Mumm – Bus Driver
W.A. Lindblad – Power Line Repairman
Review by Sven Soetemans
Eco-horror at its finest
Liebermann’s debut may looks ridiculous on paper (a plague of lethal worms?!?) but it’s much more interesting and better than you’d suspect. Apart from the outstanding shlock- effects, the best aspect about the film is the genuine location of a typical American small-town.
Liebermann chose for a nasty looking Georgia swampland, inhabited by unfriendly people with darn ugly accents. During an immense storm, the electricity lines hit the swampy grounds and cause for the worms turn mental. ‘Squirm’ starts out a little slow, with only some atmospheric music and neat set-pieces to enjoy during the first hour. But your patience is rewarded with several terrific and convincing shock-effects afterwards.
In one of his earliest films as a make-up designer, Rick Baker immediately proves he’s a professional artist. The acting is hard to judge since the Georgian accents are so tough to listen to at times. I particularly liked Jean Sullivan in the role of overly worried mother. It looks like she’s trying to give a certain depth of oppressed paranoia to her character.
Squirm surely isn’t a brilliant film but horror fans can’t really afford to miss it since it’s a creature feature curiosum! Killer worms!!!
Review by Wayne Malin
Good–for what it is
A vicious storm downs a power line near a very small Georgia town. It (somehow) drives all the worms crazy and turns them into vicious man-eaters! The town is cut off from civilization and the worms attack…
The plot is just silly (flesh-eating WORMS? Come on!) but the film never takes itself TOO seriously. A lot of the dialogue is very tongue in cheek, and there are LOTS of close-ups of screaming worms (news to me–I didn’t know worms could scream). So it’s really hard to take any of this seriously.
The acting is all pretty bad (even Jean Sullivan the one “name” in the cast) and the plot moves in fits and starts. And it does take a while to really get going. But when the attacks happen things really get going. There are some pretty good, if disgusting, special effects (one VERY disturbing scene shows worms burrowing into a guys FACE) and seeing literally MOUNTAINS of worms squirming around is kind of queasy.
It you take this film literally you’re gonna hate it. But if you accept it for the low-budget, slightly campy film it is you’ll probably have a fairly good time. Worth seeing at least once just for the gruesome special effects.
I saw the PG rated one on cable which (I heard) is one minute shorter than the R rated one. Purportedly all that’s missing is some minor nudity (some of which was in the PG one) and some swearing. All the gore is still there.