Follow TV Tropes


Film / Frogs

Go To

Cold green skin against soft warm flesh... a croak... a scream.

Frogs is a 1972 eco-horror film starring Sam Elliott and Ray Milland.

Fed up with their home being polluted, frogs and other animals start attacking humans around a mansion of an old rich man celebrating his birthday.

Nature strikes back with these examples:

  • Artistic License – Biology: The lizards that knock over chemicals in the greenhouse and kill a man with poison gas should have been killed by the toxin themselves.
  • Broken Aesop: The film's "don't mess with Nature" message would probably be more credible if the animals seeking vengeance weren't mostly introduced species, hence no more beneficial to the ecosystem than Old Man Crockett's pollution.
  • Covers Always Lie: The toads are not giant-sized nor eat human flesh, and they just want the pond, thank you very much. For that matter they're about the only wildlife that doesn't kill anyone. Oh, and toads are not frogs.
  • Advertisement:
  • Duelling Movies: By incredible coincidence, the film got released on the same date as Silent Running, another ecologically-themed film.
  • Evil Cripple: Old man Crockett cares more about keeping his birthday festivities on schedule than about the growing body count or whether his own grandchildren are in danger.
  • Gaia's Vengeance: Of the "mess with nature, and nature messes with you" variety.
  • Going in Circles: Iris staggers off the path to avoid a rattlesnake, stumbles around in the brush for a while, falls in a pond full of leeches, and eventually finds her way back to the same path ... and the same rattlesnake, still coiled up by the butterfly net she'd dropped earlier.
  • Horror Doesn't Settle for Simple Tuesday: Most of the deaths occur during 4th of July, which is also old man Crockett's birthday.
  • Advertisement:
  • I Just Shot Marvin in the Face: Michael becomes prey to the swamplife after he accidentally shoots himself in the leg while tripping.
  • It Can Think: Possibly; the frogs retreat when Sam Elliott is about to exterminate a crowd of them, before he can actually do anything. A tegu bites through a boat's tether, allowing water moccasins to swarm the man who swims out to retrieve the drifting vessel. Snakes and baby alligators seem to herd Iris back towards the rattlesnake she'd previously evaded. In-Verse, Crockett openly mocks this possibility.
  • Misplaced Wildlife: The film is set in Florida (or at least shot there), but the lizards are represented by black and white tegus (from South America) and tokay geckos (from Asia), and the spiders are Aphonopelma chalcodes, a tarantula native to Arizona and Mexico. The titular "frogs" are actually cane toads, native to Central and South America, but those are excusable as cane toads are an invasive exotic species in Florida.
    • Ironically, tokay geckos and tegus are both found in the wilds of Florida now, but hadn't yet become established from escaped pet stock when the film was made.
  • Never Smile at a Crocodile: While looking for his wife Iris, Stuart is ambushed by alligators and is killed.
  • Noisy Nature: Justified with the frogs' constant chirping. Played with when old man Crockett starts hallucinating that his trophy room's preserved animal heads are vocalizing like living animals.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Played up heavily with lizards, snakes, alligators of various sizes, and a huge alligator snapping turtle.
  • Opt Out / Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Three characters decide to leave Crockett mansion as the bodies start piling up.
  • Shirtless Scene: Provided by Sam Elliott. His shirtlessness in this movie would later get him a starring role in the film Lifeguard.
  • Spiders Are Scary: As Michael writhes helplessly on the ground, tarantulas starts falling from trees, which then proceed to kill and cocoon him in web and moss.
  • The Stinger: After the credits, an animated frog hops out with a human hand hanging out of its mouth, only to swallow it with a cartoony gulp and hop away.
  • Terrifying Pet Store Rat: One of the reptiles shown during the opening credits (presented with suitably-ominous music) is a seriously-misplaced tokay gecko.
  • Today, X. Tomorrow, the World!: The tagline used on some of the posters.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: The fate of the servants' group is left ambiguous, as they're last seen being harassed by birds but not actually dying. (Their scattered luggage is found by the second fleeing group, but it's unclear if the trio got fatally ambushed or just dropped their bags to run to safety faster.) Also, Crockett's Irish setter Colonel is last seen slinking away as the toads invade the old man's house.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: