Springtime
is in the air. The birds are chirping. The flowers are blooming. Pollen
is drifting through the wind, taking hold and situating itself to help
bring about new and exciting leafy living things to make our lives
enriched. As a result, welcome to our latest CHUD List, a look at the
20 best plants in film history. A few things to consider:

Anne
Ramsey was not officially a plant, so she is excused from this list.
The same goes for Maude Adams, Jack Elam, and that thing on Aaron
Neville.

Also, fuck The Happening. And here we go!


14. Alien Plant Of London

Exterior: Massive, walking, venom-spewing plant from beyond the stars.

Interior: Remains of 1960’s-era British people.

The Film: The Day of the Triffids (1962)

Leafy Truths: Here’s some information you might find useful: Triffids are crap.

Rather, the Triffids in this film are crap. If you can’t outrun the film version Triffid, then you deserve to have it annoy you to death with the loud clicking noises it makes, which are never really explained (a form of communication perhaps, but who cares). And just in case you weren’t inconvenienced enough, they’ll spray you with a venom emitted from their head in the form of a vapor cloud. Then they feed.

So basically they wander around for a while looking for folks, and when they find them their attack mode consists of spraying the victims with vaporous fumes before devouring them.

Root of Evil: The book says they were the result of a Soviet experiment gone awry. Naturally, the film ignores that origin and instead goes with the far more plausible “spores from outer space” angle.

Gardening Tips: How do you dispose of giant walking plants that have a unerring urge to chomp down on you?

Answer: Salt water.

These monstrosities are destroyed by salt water! It isn’t bad enough that they are slower than slow, but add to the fact that they come to earth, walk around the place eating everyone in sight, and you’re telling me their biggest weakness is salt water?

Hmm… if you thought the alien conflict in Signs was unbelievable, then you can thank The Day of the Triffids for giving Shayamalan the “ingenious” ending he so craved, because it’s virtually the same idea.


This 1981 Triffid is every bit as shitty as its 1962 predecessor.


Its Place in Plantdom: These walking attackers are surprisingly still beloved, especially by the British, which is a little odd seeing as how these things feast primarily on the blighters. In fact, since the publication of John Wyndham’s novel in 1951, every generation has had its own version of the yarn. There’s this 1962 thing, the 1981 mini-series which was closer to the book but still kind of balls, and now Alex reports that the BBC is about to release another version of the bloody thing.

These leafy bastards aren’t going anywhere anytime soon, and I don’t know if that’s necessarily a good thing.

Happy Ending: Salt water is poured over the Triffids, who then decide to melt all over the place and scream with their incessant clicking sounds, while blind British people ‘look’ on, thus saving the world from the scourge of these evil creatures.

Actually, that’s how every film should end.

- Steve Murphy


13. ‘King’ Of All Plants?

Exterior: Alien meteorite.

Interior: A moss-covered Stephen King.

The Film: Creepshow (1982)

Leafy Truths: This organism likes to hitch rides on things. First, it bums a ride to earth by attaching itself to the outer layer of a meteorite. Then, along comes a bumbling farmer who finds the rock, so naturally the entity decides to leap onto the skin of the poor fellow and spread itself all over, resulting in the man becoming a grass-covered being who’s only way out is at the end of a shotgun barrel.

Root of Evil: The origin of the organism is never explained. All that is known is that it’s a fast spreading little bastard.

Gardening Tips: Outer space things generally tend to be tough to kill, and this one is no exception. In fact, there is NO way to combat the spread of the grassy ass unless you happen to have a pump-action Winchester handy and the cool reserve to off yourself, because short of that this creature will keep spreading and spreading and spreading…


The Incredible Hulk, as he enters puberty.


Its Place in Plantdom: Over the years the Creepshow movies have aged about as well as Klaus Kinski’s rotting corpse, what with Ted Danson’s 70’s hair practically out-acting him during his segments and bad Tom Savini makeup (see: The Creep from Creepshow 2), but somehow the episode with King playing the farmer has managed to attain cult status, despite a raucously campy performance by the author himself. The makeup is great as the hillbilly is slowly overcome by the lush green alien moss, until he barely resembles a man at all and is ultimately left with only one way out.


“I’m tired of looking like Wilford Brimley.”


Happy Ending: The moss wins. King’s characters’ only solution is suicide, so he puts the barrel of his shotgun in his mouth and pulls the trigger. Of course, this only ends the story of the farmer, but the alien organism itself lives on to spread another day.

- Steve Murphy