Go Kart Films presents
"If you was a man, I'd slap you silly!"- Sheriff Buford Lawson (Rob Brink)
Stars: Kristi Russell, Ariadne Shaffer, Rob Brink
Other Stars: James Duval, Michael McConnohie, John Ponzio, Mary Woronov
Director: Cody Jarrett
MPAA Rating: Not Rated for nudity, sexual situations, rape, violence
Run Time: 01h:19m:28s
Release Date: 2005-04-12
Genre: late night
DVD ReviewGoing into a film like this, one asks only to be entertained. The movie may be horrible, cheesy, incompetent—it doesn't matter, just so long as it gives the viewers a good time. Thankfully, Frog-g-g! does just that. I'm not sure I'd consider it a classic of the genre, but it gets the job done with generous dollops of nudity, comedy, and ridiculous plot twists and line deliveries aplenty.
Dr. Barbara Michaels (Kristi Russell) lives the good life; she's an agent of the Enviromental Protection Agency, traveling the country to defend the environment. She gets to wear tight clothes, drives a spiffy Miata convertible, and has an amorous new girlfriend, Trixie (Ariadne Shaffer), who tends bar in her current stop. Buxom Barbara is investigating reports of chemical dumping, which has led to freakish mutations in the local marine life. Upon confronting the likely suspect, Huntley Grimes (Michael McConnohie), Barbara is met with scorn, contempt, and voluminous profanity. Grimes calls in his brother-in-law, the sheriff (Rob Brink), who gives Barbara a piece of his mind as well.
While Barbara tries to figure out the mysterious substance being pumped into the town's water supply, a fiendish creature that is essentially a bipedal, man-sized frog (or frog-g-g) has begun hunting for a mate. He needs to find that one genetic match that will allow him to breed. The lonely frog-g-g wreaks havoc at the championship football game before heading to his final destination: the local Catholic girls' school.
Just writing all that calls to mind how ridiculous films like this can seem when simply viewed on the basis of the facts. Frog-g-g! is certainly ridiculous, but it has a genial quality to it that elevates it above standard straight-to-video dreck, and it pleased the crowd I watched it with. When the frog-g-g claims his first female victim, the dubbed on sounds of casual ribbiting while the creature, um, "gets to work" were an inspired sound effects choice. Redneck characters provide the laughs here too, and chief acting honors in that department must go to Brian Ruppert, whose performance as Johnson is sheer quality in its over-the-top attitude. When he takes on the frog-g-g at the end, screaming "You sliiimebaaall!," I felt like a new catchphrase could be born, if only more people would see the film. And there are numerous other moments of its caliber. Director/writer Cody Jarrett clearly knew what he wanted with this movie, and he appears to have gotten it from both cast and crew. As the lead, Russell carries the film well, both in and out of her clothing. Her showdown with the frog-g-g is riotously funny with her profane challenge to the creature (and further nudity).
I watched this movie under what I can only assume were the intended conditions (with friends and alcohol present), and if I had watched it alone, I'm not sure it would have had the same impact. I did find that a second trip through, skipping around to my favorite moments, was still enjoyable, however. At a mere 79 minutes, Frog-g-g! certainly doesn't wear out its welcome, and should make a fine addition to anyone's evening of trashy cinema.
Rating for Style: B
Rating for Substance: B-
|Aspect Ratio||1.85:1 - Widescreen|
|Original Aspect Ratio||yes|
Image Transfer Review: The major problem with this disc is the image quality; presented in nonanamorphic widescreen, the picture is okay considering the lack of enhancement, but could obviously have been better. Colors are generally solid, but the black levels look shaky more often than not.
Image Transfer Grade: C
Audio Transfer Review: The Dolby 2.0 track doesn't have much oomph, but I suppose it suits the bargain basement nature of the movie. Dialogue is clear, and there isn't much in the way of sound effects to need a better presentation (although a gunshot at the end does sound noticably phony).
Audio Transfer Grade: B-
Disc ExtrasStatic menu with music
Scene Access with 29 cues and remote access
1 Original Trailer(s)
3 Other Trailer(s) featuring Before menu loads: Ball of Wax, Horns and Haloes, and Ding-a-ling-Less
Packaging: unmarked keepcase
Extras Review: The extras here are slim. I would have been interested in a commentary from the folks who made this, as I imagine it would be fairly entertaining. In any event, we have a brief making-of featurette, titled simply Making of Frog-g-g! (10m:30s), which has a mix of behind-the-scenes footage, deleted material, and snippets of interviews. It's okay, but nothing special. The trailer is the only other extra. There are non-skippable trailers before the menu for Ball of Wax, Horns and Haloes, and Ding-a-ling-Less, but viewers can fast-forward through them.
Extras Grade: C
Final CommentsA cheesy good time, Frog-g-g! serves up the exploitation goods with humor to spare. Everyone seems to be having a good time, and it's hard for the audience not to as well. The DVD is fairly mediocre, but those wanting some cheap thrills could do worse than check this out.
Jeff Wilson 2005-05-12