Mongolian Death Worm

If you see a title like “Mongolian Death Worm” and begin to wonder what the movie could be about then you’re clearly not seeing enough terrible b-movies. Because, as I’m sure you already know, this film is about Mongolian Death Worms. Big ones. That eat people.

Sean Patrick Flanery stars as a man who has spent many years of his life searching for the tomb of Genghis Khan, as you do. His latest exploits are interrupted when he is persuaded to give a lift to two stranded medical workers (Alicia, played by Victoria Pratt and a less important guy played by a less important guy type person, no offence to the actor) and people start being dragged off by big worms. And then there is the nearby oil-drilling plant with a big secret or two, a deceitful manager and workers who don’t like to hang around because they think the Mongolian Death Worm will catch and kill them.

It’s all the usual mix of drama and thrills that any creature feature should have, though it’s done with less flair and wit than some. That being said, it’s also better than many other TV movies. That’s mainly thanks to the impressive FX work. The big, deadly worms don’t get a lot of time on screen but when they do they’re quite well done.

The acting is okay. Sean Patrick Flanery does well with his character, Victoria Pratt is a lot less appealing than she thinks she is and then we have Drew Waters providing some entertainment as the shady plant manager who gets more and more manic as his grand plans unravel.

The script, by Neil Elman, Kevin Leeson and Steven R. Monroe, is pretty bad. There are occasional moments of wit but this is bogged down by a lot of clumsy characterisations and attempts at chemistry between the male and female lead.

Monroe fares better as a director, following the standard pattern for this type of film. It could be slightly better paced but, overall, does quite well with the build-up/attack/grand finale structure of the thing. And those effects I already mentioned really help.

It’s not in the same league as a movie like Tremors and it’s not as laughably entertaining as one of the many high-concept Asylum movies but this is a surprisingly solid small-screen b-movie that passes 90 minutes harmlessly enough.