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Bug Off! (2001)

A minor kids' film. Aliens from a planet where two species of toothy, subtitled creatures are continually arguing arrive on Earth to study the way humans manage to get on together. Mrs Pickle Nickle (Gabrielle Woodsk), an alien spy, takes work as a baby-sitter for young Krista (Barbara Shipley) and her obnoxious kid brother (Andrew Fugate), who are constantly feuding. Through a misunderstanding, the alien woman transforms the boy into an insect, and the girl has to care for the creature, keeping it out of the clutches of knockabout alien Yendor (Steve Anderson) who wants to take it home to demonstrate his rival's ineptitude. With goofy, childish humour - lots of alien mispronunciations and human adults just as caricatured as the aliens - and minimal Kafka-Cronenberg effects, it's mildly irritating or amiable by turns, with a heavy emphasis on the message that siblings should be nice to each other. Directed by T.C. Christensen.
KIM NEWMAN

First published in this form here.


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