A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that, for the standards of science-fiction action, this is a rousing, well-made monster flick that's high on fun and excitement but low on terror and gore; there's some salty language, yes, and the monsters are dispatched in fairly spectacular, splattery fashion, but there's not a lot of blood, and the human victims of the creatures are dispatched in bloodless fashion. There's a lot of firearms action in the film - courtesy two "survivalist" characters -- but it's all unleashed against huge, scary worm-monsters who clearly have it coming.
What's the story?
In TREMORS, handymen Kevin Bacon and Fred Ward are two semi-employed handymen who make the decision to get out of the sleepy burg of Perfection, Nevada; their decision to leave is complicated by the sudden appearance of hungry, colossal tunneling worm-creatures who hunt prey by vibration -- including humans. As Perfection comes under siege, Ward and Bacon rally the town's handful of residents to try to escape before they become a meal for creatures from the beyond.
Is it any good?
Modestly made, Tremors is nonetheless a real crowd-pleaser, in part thanks to the chemistry between Ward and Bacon. While the film's got a modest budget, the script has real polish and integrity, as it hews close to the rules it sets and applies real logic and care to its scenes.
There's some adventure violence and peril in the film, yes, but the movie's so wonderfully aware of what it is, hewing close to the B-movie tradition, that it never overdose the rough stuff; instead, it's simple fun that works remarkably well. There have been several straight-to-video sequels, but the original is clearly the best of the bunch -- and a great modern iteration of an old-fashioned creature feature.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the appeal of monster films, as well as the tradition of the B-movie -- low-budget, low-starpower films that nonetheless become cult classics. They can also talk about the communitarian message of Tremors, and how the town of Perfection comes together to survive.
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