Dead Ant isn’t just some fly-by-night cult oddity that is looking to cash in on the Halloween season. It’s a bonafide Drive-In thriller that mixes comedy with rock and roll, adding in some killer insects and quite a bit of madness. It’s the type of movie we don’t see too much of any more. And that’s one of the reasons star Tom Arnold wanted to take it on in the first place.
Tom Arnold stars in the movie with Stranger Things and Goonies favorite Sean Astin and former Hollywood bad boy Jake Busey. Also appearing in this madcap ode to sci-fi schlock from the 50s is Michael Horse, who plays the beloved Hawk on Twin Peaks. In the movie, which is being called ‘too much fun’ by critics, members of a metal band get a chance at a comeback when they are invited to perform at Coachella. When they become stranded in the desert, they have to fight for their lives against giant ants. But is it all just a bad drug trip? Perhaps.
And that’s the beauty of Dead Ant. You never know what is going to happen. Our own Ryan J. Downey recently got a chance to speak with Tom Arnold about the movie for his Pop Curse podcast. Arnold, who got his start in acting with the hit sitcom Rosanne before transitioning to movies like Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare and True Lies wanted to do the movie for one simple reason. It reminded him of the b-movies he loved as a kid. He calls it a true Drive-In movie experience.
Arnold recalls going to the South Ottumwa Drive-In in his early years, though that theater closed way back in 1996. It defined his youth. He goes onto say this.
“Our drive-in was party central. That’s where my dad took us. That’s where everything happened. It was on the edge of town. It was an exciting place. That was all we had. So going to the drive-in on the weekends was everything. And we didn’t go to see The Bridge Over the River Kwai or Citizen Kane. We saw these types of movies and loved them. [Dead Ant] is a drive-in [style] movie, with your speaker hanging on the car window, when you could walk to the bathroom in the middle of it without missing anything, that whole experience. The horror was scary but you’re in a big place with a screen in front of you and everybody you know is in a car behind you so it’s fun scary, you know?”
Tom Arnold wants everyone to embrace the absurdity of Dead Ant. It’s not a movie to be taken seriously. It’s supposed to be 100% fun. And that’s it. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, which had its World Premiere at the Screamfest Horror Film Festival that took place October 10th through the 19th at the TCL Chinese 6 Theaters in Hollywood, we have the Dead Ant trailer for you below. Tom Arnold went onto talk about how seriously he takes acting in Hollywood, which doesn’t sound very serious at all.
“Professional wrestling was our biggest sport. And we bought into it! Even to this day, when a professional wrestler passes away, I have to take a moment, because that’s a visceral connection to my childhood. We just couldn’t wait for the weirdest, scariest [movie]. We didn’t try to pick the movies apart. We were fans. ‘We’re buying this. This is awesome.’ Film critics and the like look at these films differently than people who grew up like I did. [These movies] were such a big part of our lives. So to be involved with a film that’s a little bit of an homage to that is a fun thing.”
So, if you’re looking to avoid the serious horror movies that are all doom and gloom and blood and guts, perhaps you’d rather worship at the alter of bug guts that is Dead Ant. There will be plenty of opportunities to watch the movie as we blast through the Halloween season, with the comedy thriller hitting VOD and certain theaters soon.