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Global Horror and Monster Cinema: Nature Strikes Back

This is a resource guide for academic research in the global horror and monster cinema field of study.

Introduction to Nature Strikes Back films

The Nature Strikes Back genre is usually characterized by some form of mutated natural element running amok through humanity. This would include mutated animals, plants, and insects. Also commonly referred to as Nature Runs Amok or Eco Horror.

Below is a listing of ten films in this genre from the global cinema community. This list is not all encompassing nor does it endeavor to rank these as the ten best nature strikes back films. 

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No Blade of Grass

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No Blade of Grass exists in a world where a deadly virus has wiped out all species of grass in London. This leads to famine and chaos all over the UK. John Custance thinks there will be some resources available at his brother's farm in Scotland, and along the way his family encounters scores of people willing to do anything for food. 

Director: Cornel Wilde

Writers: Cornel Wilde and Sean Forestal

Stars: Nigel Davenport, Jean Wallace, John Hamill

Year: 1970

Country: UK

Long Weekend

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Long Weekend features a young suburban couple hoping to have a nice weekend getaway out in the country. They soon figure out that the local nature is in no mood to deal with them, and a quiet weekend getaway turns in to a nightmare vacation. 

Director: Colin Eggleston

Writer: Everette De Roche

Stars: John Hargreaves, Briony Behets, Mike McEwen

Year: 1978

Country: Austrailia

Blood Glacier

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Blood Glacier features a group of scientists working to prepare a mountain outpost for inspection when a nearby glacier starts leaking a mysterious red fluid. They discover that whenever the fluid comes in contact with the local wildlife something strange starts to happen. Soon they are busy defending themselves in an attempt to survive the growing horde. 

Director: Marvin Kren

Writers: Benjamin Hessler and Marvin Kren

Stars: Gerhard Leibmann, Edita Malovcic, Santos

Year: 2013

Country: Austria

Black Sheep

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Black Sheep takes place on a quaint New Zealand farm run by two brothers who are surrounded by sheep. Eventually one brother hopes to increase profits by genetically enhancing the sheep. However, it is not long before they realize they actually created blood thirsty attack sheep. Now they must fight for their lives while waiting for a cure. 

Director/Writer: Jonathan King

Stars: Oliver Driver, Nathan Meister, Tammy Davis

Year: 2006

Country: New Zealand 

Piranha 3D

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Piranha 3D takes place during the Lake Victoria spring break party. However, at the same time a local sheriff finds a chewed up body. The autopsy discovers it is an ancient blood-thirsty piranha that caused the wounds. Fearing for the lives of all the spring-breakers, the local sheriff attempts to clear the beaches to no avail. Now they must try to save as many people as possible during the fishy feeding frenzy.

Director: Alexandre Aja

Writer: Pete Goldfinger and Josh Stolberg

Stars: Elisabeth Shue, Jerry O'Connell, Richard Dreyfuss

Year: 2010

Country: USA 


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Sharknado envisions what would happen if a freak hurricane struck Los Angeles and happened to suck up scores of sharks along the way. What follows is a story about a group of people who struggle to evade the furiously flying sharks.

Director: Anthony C. Ferrante

Writer: Thunder Levin

Stars: Ian Ziering, Tara Reid, John Heard

Year: 2013

Country: USA 


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Them! is a nuclear danger film that features giant mutated ants terrorizing the New Mexico desert. The local sheriff figures out how to destroy the hive, but two queen ants escape. They start a new colony in Los Angeles and now they must race to stop the threat to the West Coast before it grows out of control. 

Director: Gordon Douglas

Writers: Ted Sherdeman (screenplay) and Russell S. Hughes (adaptation)

Stars: James Whitmore, Edmund Gwenn, Joan Weldon

Year: 1954

Country: USA

Night of the Lepus

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Night of the Lepus is about an Arizona rancher who attempts to curb all the rabbits devastating his crops. He calls in a favor and a zoologist attempts to stop the rampant breeding of the rabbits. However, instead he creates wolf-sized rabbits that are hungry for cows, horses, and man. Eventually the National Guard is called in as a desperate attempt to stop the ravaging rabbits. 

Director: William F. Claxton

Writers: Don Holliday and Gene R. Kearney

Stars: Stuart Whitman, Janet Leigh, Rory Calhoun

Year: 1972

Country: USA


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Prey follows Nathan and his wife as they struggle to save the family pesticide business during a reunion in the remote countryside. Nathan goes on his first hunting trip when his father is trampled by a runaway deer. As soon as the hunting group starts to investigate what spooked the deer they find out they are now the hunted. 

Director: Antoine Blossier

Writers: Antoine Blossier and Erich Vogle

Stars: Grégoire Colin, François Levantal, Fred Ulysse

Year: 2010

Country: France

The Ruins

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The Ruins tells the fate of a group of American students who are on vacation in Mexico when they decide to visit some remote Mayan ruins. Once there they are besieged by local natives who will not let them leave after touching the ruins. They soon discover there are worse things than the natives to worry about once the plants start to move around. 

Director: Carter Smith

Writer: Scott B. Smith

Stars: Jena Malone, Shawn Ashmore, Jonathan Tucker

Year: 2008

Country: USA/Austrailia


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