Slither Movie Poster Image




Gross-out comedy-horror mix isn't for kids.
  • Review Date: October 23, 2006
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Horror
  • Release Year: 2006
  • Running Time: 96 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

No one is a great role model.


Violence is comic and gross-out: alien-infected husband tries to strangle his wife with an elastic-long arm; alien-impregnated woman swells up into a giant ball and explodes, spewing blood-red slugs everywhere; slugs enter human and animal mouths (penetration imagery); infected humans become flesh-eating zombies; humans shoot at slugs and the zombies created by slugs-in-humans; girl uses curling iron to burn slug that attacks her; finale involves wife stabbing her now completely grotesque-big-mass-of-pink-yuckiness husband, his throwing her and other folks against walls, a big explosion of alien goo and blood.


The alien "" is built on sexual metaphor (penetrations, convulsions that vaguely resemble climaxes, and lustful comments about marriage and procreation); Starla is designated a sexual object (ogled by her students and men); man rejected in bed by his wife picks up another woman in a bar (they kiss, then he's attacked by the alien); this woman says she wanted to have sex with him back when she was 10 or 11; alien-infected man has "" with a woman, his tentacles emerging from his belly to penetrate her belly (gurgly fluid-pumping sounds); sexual slang ("--k," "---y"); adolescent girl in tub approached by a slug in the water, with camera point of view through her legs.


Lots: at least 30 f-words, repeated s-words, various other profanities ("," damn," ""); sexual slang ("--k," "---y").

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Mayor smokes cigarettes; characters drink in the karaoke bar; Grant pours himself a drink; Starla holds a glass of wine.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this film features graphic gross-out horror and comedy and violence against animals (a cow, deer, dogs, and cats appear as bloody corpses). Grant becomes increasingly gory and bloody, and his body changes with extreme makeup and prosthetics (eventually, he's expanded so much that he fills a room, absorbing other bodies into his own, including one that shows his naked bottom as he sinks into the fleshy mass). The slugs jump into people's mouths, the people turn into flesh-eating zombies (some of these eating images are very gross). Characters shoot guns and stab at the monster. Characters smoke cigarettes and drink in a bar and a party, and Grant drinks once at home.

What's the story?

Starla (Elizabeth Banks) has settled. Obviously perky, probably sweet, and certainly exciting for her high school students in her tight little skirts, she's also married to the lunkiest guy in town, Grant Grant (Michael Rooker). Starla has a more suitable partner in handsome sheriff Bill Pardy (Nathan Fillion), who's had a crush on her since they were kids. She only realizes this when Grant becomes infected by an alien and tries to consume the entire town's population. After Grant is zapped by an alien through his chest, he transforms, slowly at first, and then quickly: he craves raw meat. As he turns increasingly hideous, alien-Grant sends forth a horde of blood-red parasite slugs to infect humans: these slugs shoot themselves into people's mouths, and the host bodies then become flesh-eating zombies, staggering and lurching like movie zombies tend to do. In one extended sequence, the slugs infect a family, though teenaged daughter Kylie (Tania Saulnier) fights off the invasion long enough to be rescued by Bill, who arrives just in time to see her zombified family attacking the pickup truck in which she's trapped.

Is it any good?


Goofy and gross, SLITHER revisits the old alien invasion plot with comedic violence that might bother sensitive viewers. Suitably reluctant and arrogant at the same time, Bill is disinclined to shoot things. But he's also resourceful and careful about his image. He figures out that everyone who ingests slugs is connected to Grant (they all insist, sometimes speaking in unison, that "Marriage is a sacred bond"), and so the destruction of alien-Grant is the only way to end it. "I'll keep growin'," grrrs Grant, "'Til I'm everywhere, 'til I'm everything."

What Bill doesn't see is Grant's mirroring of himself: the guy who loves the girl so hard and so long and so hopelessly that he loses himself. Lucky for him, this loss of self becomes literal for Grant and his many extensions (all ugly, all pink and oozy, all soulless). It takes some serious devastation for Starla to see her proper partner, but Bill's still waiting.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the continued popularity of gross-out and horror movies. What is it about these kinds of movies that fascinates people, especially teens?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:March 31, 2006
DVD release date:October 24, 2006
Cast:Elizabeth Banks, Michael Rooker, Nathan Fillion
Director:James Gunn
Studio:Universal Pictures
Run time:96 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:for strong horror violence and gore, and language.

This review of Slither was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 14 years old Written byIronZombie75 November 3, 2009

If your kids can handle disgusting gore

Okay, i thought this movie was okay, but sub-par, nontheless. However, this movie is downright disgusting, and that's coming from a guy who watches Ultra-Gory and Violent Horror Movies (28 Weeks Later, Final Destination, The Descent, The Saw Series, etc.) This is classified as a gross-out movie for a good reason. Also, the sheriff guy cusses a LOT. There is kind of a sex scene, but its more like alien sex 0_o
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008
Adult Written bydaniel.nicholas... July 16, 2009


If you can stand gross-out horror mixed with comedy, this is the movie for you! It's hilarious and creepy, which is a fun mix. There's lots of gross stuff so if your kids can't handle that, don't let them see it. Language isn't so bad. The mayor has a potty mouth which is pretty funny at times. Mostly just the f-word though.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Great role models


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?