Director: Guillermo del Toro

This much is certain: Guillermo del Toro signed onto the creature feature Mimic with the best intentions. As evidenced by every movie he’s made since, the Mexican genre maestro loves monsters and beasts with the passion of a little kid reading Famous Monsters of Filmland issues. So when mega-producers Harvey and Bob Weinstein approached del Toro after the warm reception to his excellent 1993 vampire debut Cronos, he must have leapt at the chance to play ghouls-and-goblins with Hollywood money.

It’s too bad that Hollywood money also brings with it Hollywood problems. As the story goes, the Weinsteins made del Toro’s life a living hell during Mimic’s hectic, stressful production; by the time it was released, the film—in which Mira Sorvino tries his best not to become food for humongous termite/praying mantis hybrids—wasn’t what the director had in mind.

Revisited today, Mimic has its moments, but it’s far too loud and showy to complement del Toro’s other works, known for their delicate characterizations and imaginative chills.