a film recap in approximately 429 words

1954. Black and white classic. Rated PG. Carries the warning, “contains mild threat and horror.”

The first ‘Big Bug’ movie ever made. The movie that kick-started the idea of radioactive creatures.


Scary music. New Mexico. The desert.

Small girl in shock.

Two cops. One uni-brow. One “10/9”, two “10/10’s,” two “ we got a 9/14.”

One wrecked trailer and a spilled box of sugar cubelets.

No money was taken.


A terrible sound in the desert. A terrible mark in the sand.

One wrecked store. Gramps Johnson dead in the basement.

No money was taken.

A big pile of sugar and many, many small ants.


A terrible sound in the desert. A terrible man-scream.

One missing cop and “indications of a homicidal maniac.”

One FBI Agent. Lots of evidence but nothing adds up. Gramp’s body has enough formic acid in it to kill 20 men.


Department of Agriculture scientists, entomologists Dr. Medford and daughter Doctor Pat.

One 10” waist. Four pair of bug-eyed goggles to protect against sandstorms.

One risk of nationwide panic.

One blood curdling lady-scream.

Ants! Giant ants! Mutations from lingering radiation.

Thompson sub-machine gun.

Dr. Medford, “A biblical prophecy come true.”


One giant ant mound seen from the air.

Two skulls, a pile of bones, one rib cage and the missing cop’s belt.

One ant nest diagram, “note the wonderful and intricate engineering.”

Two bazookas. Phosphorous explosives. Two asbestos suits and lots of cyanide.


Down the ant hole. Dead ants all over the place, spit and a crumbling rock wall. Two escaped Queen ants.


Dr. Medford, “we haven’t seen the end of Them, but we’ve only had a close view of what may be the end of us.”

Sixth grade science film strip of ants. Scarier than movie.


Sign in army HQ – Monitor all news for (most notable):

  1. Thefts of sugar, syrup, sweets.
  2. Strange phenomena
  3. Flying saucers
  4. Strange odors
  5. High-pitched sounds
  6. Unnatural things alive or dead


Fes Parker wearing ill-fitting hospital gown in ‘psychopathic ward’ saw flying saucers shaped like ants.

Ocean-going freighter loaded with sugar attacked by giant ants. One wrecked train car carrying 40 tons of sugar, one dead husband in morgue. Two drunk guys talking about formal or informal wear for social occasions.

Los Angeles is under martial law. Army in the storm drains.

Storm drain #267. Two saved children, one death-scream, one dead hero, one cave-in, three flamethrowers. Two dead queen ants whose heads keep bobbing even while on fire.

Dr. Medford, “when man entered the atomic age he opened the door to a new world. What we will eventually find in that new world, nobody can predict.”

The end


Notes regarding DVD cover.

No lady in a red dress and high heels is killed by an ant in this film.

I do not recall anyone saying ‘kill one and two take its place!’ in this film, although I could be wrong.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Joey Frinzi

    I never came across THEM before but after reading your review I jst had to track it down! What a great (cheeesy) movie!! Enjoyed every minute. And your witty and insightful Review is so spot on! 😀 My cultural portfolio has just expanded beyond my imagination. Hope you’re keeping well.

    1. admin

      Hi Joey. Very important to keep up with these B-movies! I’m so glad you liked it. And thanks regarding the review. I have to do these once in awhile when life gets too much. ‘It Came From Outer Space’ is another REALLY cheesy one. Have you seen it? OMG. Crazy. Thanks, I hope all is well with you too. Take care and watch out for any strange phenomena : )
      Take care.

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