Film: Bug!

(For other uses of the term "Bug", see the disambiguation page)

Bug is a 2006 film (based on a play by Tracy Letts) starring Ashley Judd and Michael Shannon and directed by William Friedkin. It centers around Agnes, an extremely lonely woman living in an Oklahoma motel room after the breakup of her marriage. A friend introduces her to Peter, who is similarly lonely, and the two start enjoying each other's company. The two open up to each other and then...well...

An intriguing example of folie deux. Maybe.


The movie contains examples of:

  • Corrupt the Cutie: What Peter does to Agnes. Agnes goes from a lonely, vulnerable woman to a tinfoil plastering suicidal conspiracy theorist.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Agnes is divorced from a real Jerkass - who's in prison at the start of the movie and shows up to threaten her - and her son was stolen from a supermarket cart while she was shopping. Her overwhelming guilt and sadness leave her receptive to Peter's peculiar charisma.
  • Downer Ending: Agnes and Peter kill themselves by setting themselves on fire.
  • Genre Roulette: The film would normally be considered a psychological drama or thriller while the studio promoted it as straight-up horror and the director considers it a dark romantic comedy. Maybe it's left up to the viewer.
  • Jerkass: Jerry.
  • Insane Equals Violent: Peter is this, to himself and others.
  • Loners Are Freaks
  • Love Makes You Crazy: Or extreme loneliness, for that matter.
  • Mind-Control Conspiracy: According to Peter, this is why he is on the run.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: It's nothing like the Saw movies. It's more psychological than that.
  • Psycho Supporter: Agnes. Peter isn't her first one, either.
  • Riddle for the Ages: Are the phone calls real? If they are, who's calling? One theory is it's Agnes' estranged son.
  • Sanity Slippage
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Peter claims to be this. It may even be true.
  • Through the Eyes of Madness: Everything in the film might be really happening. Or the characters could be heavy crystal meth users and we're seeing their delusions. Or Peter may be clinically insane and dragging Agnes into hell. You'll never know. Unless you listen to the director's DVD commentary.