Saturday, November 1, 2014

As the Worm Turns

The Lair of the White Worm (1998) might have been pretty terrifying if it wasn't so silly. Possibly silly isn't the right word - I believe that Ken Russell's work must always be referred to as "outrageous"

Let's see if I have the story straight: archaeologist Peter Capaldi, digging in the scenic English village of D'Ampton where he discovers the strange skull of a giant reptile - but not prehistoric: He finds it along with Roman artifacts. At a party thrown by Lord D'Ampton (Hugh Grant), he gets the story of the local monster, the D'Ampton Worm, via a catchy folk rock tune. But most importantly, he meets slinky Amanda Donohoe, local playgirl, who teaches him to play strip Snakes-and-Ladders.

There's no doubt about it: The Donohoe dame is up to no good. But can Capaldi and Grant stop her? And will her weapons involve hallucinatory visions of nuns being raped by centurions while Christ looks down from the cross? Will Capaldi fight back in kilts? Come on, it's a Ken Russell film. What do you think?

I went in thinking this would be lurid and disturbing. Lurid, yes, but really more of a horror comedy than horror. And a lot of fun as that.

And I just realized the Peter Capaldi is now the twelfth Doctor.

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