Review: Tony Jopia’s Cute Little Buggers

I thoroughly enjoyed Tony Jopia’s 2015 film, Crying Wolf 3D, so I was very excited to see he has a new creature feature coming out in 2017. If you follow my reviews, then you already know I have a soft spot for campy, comically-charged, CGI monster movies but I’m also capable of judging them fairly. Cute Little Buggers is seeing release through Uncork’d Entertainment and this made me even more excited because Uncork’d has an eye for talent and has quickly established itself as one of the best independent distributors with the highest quality movies. But, I have to admit that I haven’t been enthusiastic about their choices lately. However, Cute Little Buggers is definitely going to be one of their greatest releases of 2017 and, honestly, it’s one of the best creature features of 2017. It’s a win win situation all around, so here’s my review of this horror-comedy hopping to VOD on November 7th.

Cute Little Buggers is a British mix of Night of the Lepus and Mars Attacks. In the movie written by Garry Charles, Andy Davie and Tony Jopia, a small, rural town finds itself in the midst of an attack by a severely overpopulated band of bunny rabbits. Only these bushy tailed rodents are craving more than carrots… they’re craving blood! An extraterrestrial colony is looking to inhabit Earth with reproductive means in mind and have sent some of their scouts to the planet to search out the most habitable areas. The scouts have taken over their hosts, the bunnies, who’ve now multiplied at an alarming rate. With so much sex and death going on, can the townspeople pull it together to protect themselves from these cute little buggers? Gary Martin (Shock Treatment, Slaughter High), Caroline Munroe (Maniac, The Spy Who Loved Me) and Leslie Scoble (The Elephant Man, Village of the Damned) star alongside Kristofer Dayne, John Walker, Sara Dee, Lydie Misiek, Samar Sarila, Eryl Lloyd Parry, Tim Hope, and Carlos Paginton.

First of all, I want to say that Cute Little Buggers is a “bros” type of movie. It’s going to fit in with a rowdy bunch of animals – pun intended – looking for a gory, sexy, hilarious adventure with some horror on the side. If you watched Return of the Killer Shrews or Sharknado 5 this summer and you were left with the desire for something in that category with a little more restraint, then look no further than Cute Little Buggers! The overall cinematic quality between movies may be off kilter – Sharknado 5 had at least $1,000,000 more in budget – but this movie, directed by Tony Jopia has everything you’d want in a CGI creature feature. Boobs, blood, fairly decent acting, sarcastic and subtle humor, a ton of pulse raising action sequences and the most adorable monsters you’ll ever see. Pull up a seat next to your best friends with a keg of beer and stream this one on your television. Or, just watch it with some candy corn and a good sense of humor like I did!

At the same time, Cute Little Buggers is a movie that you have to sit through and wait for the guts and glory. After an effective opening sequence and scenes that establish the mood and plot, this film from producers Tony Jopia, Kristofer Dayne, Andrij Evans and Jeremy Stephens is light on the rabbit mauling attacks until about 75% of the way in. Even Caroline Munro’s featured performance doesn’t manage to keep things hot during the down time. But, let me assure you, the pay off is well worth the wait! The CGI is better than I expected, though that’s not saying a lot, and you actually get an above average independent action flick that strays from cliches and typical plot progression to surprise you with nonstop blood splatters, gun fights and hearty chuckles. Cute Little Buggers is a title for folks who like movies of all kinds and can find enjoyment in a crazy, zany, adorable feature like this one. You’re not getting the next big thing in cinema, but you’re still getting a wildly creative good time.

Honestly, my only criticism is that I wish the alien overlords weren’t featured in such a prominent way. I wish they stayed present in the very beginning and flew in to pull out at the very end. If it was just the alien host filled bunnies running amok, I think Cute Little Buggers could have grown in a more organic way. I think audiences would gravitate more to a plot about humans in the woods of England battling ravenous alien bunnies more without the constant shots of aliens in space. And their time on scene could’ve been substituted out for more movie magic that made me love this flick in the first place. You read that part right. I loved this movie. Again, I’ll put it out there that Cute Little Buggers is one of the best creature features of 2017. It’s a must see for any monster movie enthusiast and it’s one of the few horror movies that gives something to everybody – scifi, fantasy, comedy and action. I know people are going to attack me for this review and its score, but I’m judging this movie based on its concept and how well it pulled it off, not on how much YOU liked it. Final Score: 8 out of 10.

Written by Michael Therkelsen

(Senior Editor)