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Creepy-crawly: Horrors! Seven infestation flicks sure to give you the heebie-jeebies

UPDATED: Tue., May 25, 2021

We may not be seeing or hearing many cicadas on this side of the country, but the idea of an insect infestation on that level – especially one called “Brood X” – is still enough to give anyone the heebie-jeebies. So, in honor of those noisy little invaders, here’s a list of creepy-crawly films sure to keep that feeling going.

“Arachnophobia ” (1990)

A research mission into a secluded Venezuelan valley yields more than the few new species of butterfly the scientists were expecting. An entomologist (Julian Sands) captures two infertile but highly aggressive members of a new species of spider. Later that night, when the team’s American nature photographer (Mark L. Taylor) dies suddenly of an apparent heart attack, no one suspects the spiders.

No one thinks to check the coffin for stowaways, either. Back in the U.S., a small-town doctor (Jeff Daniels) with a severe case of arachnophobia begins to notice an unlikely pattern of deaths. “Arachnophobia” is available on Apple TV.

“The Fly” (1986)

Eccentric scientist Seth Brundle (Jeff Goldblum) manages to build a system of “telepods” between which teleportation is possible. But when a fly gets stuck in one of the telepods, Brundle’s DNA starts to unravel as he slowly morphs into a half-man, half-fly monstrosity. “The Fly” is available on Hulu.

“The Mist” (2007)

Based on Stephen King’s novella of the same name, “The Mist” follows a group of small-town residents after they are trapped together in a supermarket by a mysterious fog. The fog, they slowly discover, is filled with dangerous creatures of unknown origin. As the residents are picked off one by one, they begin turning on one another. “The Mist” is available on YouTube.

“Mimic” (1997)

Directed by Guillermo del Toro, “Mimic” follows Dr. Susan Tyler (Mira Sorvino) on a mission to eradicate a species of deadly cockroaches by genetically engineering a “Judas species” to kill the first. Years later, Tyler discovers evidence that the Judas species, which was meant to have died off, is alive, breeding and on the hunt for new prey: humans. “Mimic” is available on Amazon Prime Video.

“Eight-Legged Freaks” (2002)

A species of exotic spider ingests radioactive waste and begins to transform. But the real trouble starts when the spiders begin attacking and eating humans. With each kill, the spiders grow larger, and with them, the threat to surrounding towns. “Eight-Legged Freaks” is available on Apple TV.

“Bug” (2006)

Agnes White (Ashley Judd), a waitress living in a rundown motel, meets Peter Evans (Michael Shannon), a war veteran with unshakeable paranoia and an explanation for the silent phone calls she believes to be from her abusive ex-husband. In this psychological horror story, a pair of lonely, unhinged people find brief comfort in each other’s company before succumbing to their various psychoses. “Bug” is available on Hulu.

“Creepshow” (1982)

Shifting between live-action and animation, this comedy-horror anthology film tells a series of terrible tales lifted from the pages of a trashy comic. The second story, “The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verrill,” follows a farmer as he deals with an infestation of alien plants. “Creepshow” is available on YouTube.

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