Honestly, I think the Critters franchise is one of the most under-rated franchises around. The first entry, released in 1986, was a modest box office success and paved the way for further installments. After the first sequel, Critters 2: Main Course, failed to recoup its budget in 1988, the following two sequels were released straight-to-VHS in 1991 and 1992.
Being that February is Women in Horror Month, I bet you’re wondering what Critters has to do with women working behind-the-scenes in the horror film industry. Well, Critters 3 is directed by a woman, namely Kristine Peterson!
Kristine Peterson worked in the film industry from the 1979 to 1997. For the most part she worked as an assistant director or second assistant director on titles such as Chopping Mall (1986), The Supernaturals (1986), Nightflyers (1987), A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (1989), Beverly Hills Bodysnatchers (1989), and another popular creature feature, Tremors (1990). Eventually she carved out a path of her own and directed features including Deadly Dreams (1988) and of course, Critters 3 (1991).
Outside of horror she was a staff member on Apocalypse Now (1979), Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989), and Slaves to the Underground (1997).
For reasons that I’m not sure of, Ms. Peterson has been absent from the industry for almost two decades. Here’s hoping that she returns one day and gives us another odd, comedic horror film. To honor her contributions to the horror genre, make sure to pop in Critters 3 during your Valentine’s Day and “Walking Dead” celebrations!