It’s not that you don’t have anything else to watch, far from it, but sometimes it just takes some silly little movie to make your day better. One of such movies for me was the 2005 TV movie Locusts, starring Lucy Lawless.
Yes, Lucy Lawless, the fearless Xena, the warrior princes, herself! Yep, that was probably the only reason I’ve watched this, but a movie with a swarm of locusts terrorizing mainland US is not out of my radar anyway.
So, obviously, you are interested in the plot. Really? You haven’t seen a C-grade disaster TV movie before? OK, I’ll spell it for you.
Lucy Lawless is Maddy Rierdon, quite a big shot in the USDA (that’s United States’ Department of Agriculture) and she is in a middle of a marriage crisis (which is one of the often used subplots in such movies too). Her husband wants to settle and have a family, but you know those career women bound to fight for any cause…and straight away, the first shot of her is in her underwear and gown and oh boy…she’s stunning.
Anyway, she has locusts on her menu for today, and in the beginning of the movie we witness how dangerous they can be (although that was quite silly and basically unrational).
So, our Maddy’s got a wind of something brewing up and found out those are not just a regular locusts, but a genetically hybridized kind, courtesy of her fellow etymologist, Dr. Peter Axelrod (John Heard), who kinda does this kind of stuff for the Department of Defense. You know, those nice people in uniforms just love bugs, viruses and stuff like that.
Maddy makes a right call and orders the whole incineration of those locusts. What could go wrong, right? Well, it only takes a minute, girl…Take That used to sing about that, and apparently, they were spot on. Locusts are out in the open. Let’s get the party started!
So our bug friends are starting to eat and multiply, while we have a totally typical discussion board across the government trying to find out what to do to save the USA from being eaten (because, we will learn as the movie progresses, those locusts can turn cannibal when facing the normal botanical food shortage). And also typically, we have a military person, here in the form of General Miller (Gregory Alan Williams) proposing to douse the atmosphere over the US with VX nerve gas, as laboratory tests show it kills locusts. Yes, of course, it kills citizens too, but 10 per cent of the population, who gives a shit about them, right?
Anyway – and you’ve guessed it – the solution is found in almost last minute (where have I seen such thing before, hmmm…), no matter how fanciful and improbable, and Maddy saves the day and the USA, hooray! And she secures the sequel as well, namely Vampire Bats.
And on the top of it, Maddy finds out she’s pregnant. Now what’s not to love here, right?
Anyway, currently boasting on 3.7/10 on the IMDB, the movie itself is not that bad. Yes, you’ve seen it in different variations before, and the plot is silly, but actors give their usual nice performances in the range the plot gives them a chance to, so it’s not something you would switch out of boredom.
By the way, talking about actors….
As mentioned, Maddy Rierdon is portrayed by Lucy Lawless and while she is definitely best known for her portrayal of the famous Xena in Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and its spin-off Xena: warrior Princess, her filmography is full of other stuff as well. Let’s mention her brief appearance in The X-Files, Spider-Man, 2003 TV series Tarzan, new TV series of Battlestar Galactica, Spartacus: Gods of the Arena, Spartacus, Salem, along with the voice overs for not a few animation movies and TV series.
John Heard plays the disgraced scientist Dr. Peter Axelrod and although he’s no longer with us (died in 2017), his face was quite recognizable, the moment I’ve seen him on the screen I went “Sharknado!” (where he plays George, the old guy in Fin’s beach bar), but his film career has some other great movies in the list – C.H.U.D., Big, Home Alone, Home Alone 2, In the Line of Fire, Snake Eyes and many more, plus TV series like The Sopranos, The Lizzie Borden Chronicles, NCIS: Los Angeles, CSI: Miami or Prison Break.
As mentioned above, among the rest of the cast the more memorable was Gregory Alan Williams in the role of General Miller, and guess what, his very second role in the movie biz was in Steven Seagal’s debut Above the Law! Since then, of course, he got quite a few credits, say, Remember the Titans, The Sopranos, The West Wing, Chicago Med and many others movies and TV series.
And that’s all, folks. Your life won’t be empty for not seing this one, but if you do, you might end like it. In the end of the day, you’ve already seen worse.