Itsy Bitsy will creep you out if you're deathly afraid of spiders, but you're still bound to have a good time watching it. From director Micah Gallo, the movie follows a young, single mother of two and her struggles with parenting, drug addiction, and taking up a new job in the country as a private nurse to an antique appraiser. Oh, and all the while, the family is stalked and terrorized by an ancient evil entity taking the form of a giant, carnivorous spider. Certainly, that sounds a bit extreme on paper, but Itsy Bitsy can in fact be a pleasant surprise for those who associate giant spider movies with cheese-fests like Eight Legged Freaks and Spiders 3D, offering viewers a different kind of killer spider movie.
To boot, Itsy Bitsy is definitely not a horror movie in the traditional sense. Gorehounds may be left eager anticipating the movie's death scenes, as it takes longer for the spider madness to begin than you may suspect. This could be described as taking the Jaws route by building suspense, though you certainly see plenty of the eight-legged creature by the end. Its drama is more so the focus in this story, as the bulk of the screen time for Itsy Bitsy explores Kara's drug addiction, apparent PTSD, and the relationships between the three members of her family. Still, the horror elements are there, as the movie does provide several creepy moments and effective jump scares.
Itsy Bitsy is fun as a horror movie, but it's with its cast where the movie really shines brightest. Because there's more focus on the movie's family drama than their ordeal with the deadly spider, the casting was very vital for Itsy Bitsy's main characters. Fortunately, it delivers. Elizabeth Roberts is fantastic as Kara, and the same can be said for Arman Darbo and Chloe Perrin as her two children. There are also some memorable performances from a couple legends of the horror drama, including Pet Sematary star Denise Crosby as the local sheriff and Bruce Davison (Willard) as the man Kara's hired to provide care for.
Credit must also be given to director Micah Gallo here for opting to use practical FX for the spider, as it's the little things like this which still make watching Itsy Bitsy a lot of fun. By going this route, the arachnid - and its gooey eggs - are effectively repulsive. One of the grossest moments is when the 8-year-old girl mistakes a slimy egg sac for "jewels," squishing them with her fingers - the sound of it alone will get you. The spider itself also looks great and the climax of the movie is incredibly satisfying, but as to avoid spoilers, I'll just recommend you check it out for yourself.
From Shout! Studios, Itsy Bitsy is now in select theaters, digital, and VOD outlets as of Aug. 30. If you're expecting something campy from the giant spider flick, you'll more than likely be pleasantly surprised watching it. Without revealing anything else, I suggest you stick around to see what's after the credits as well. Especially if you have a fear of spiders, Itsy Bitsy will give you the heebie-jeebies. You can take a look at the official trailer below, courtesy of Itsy Bitsy on YouTube.