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The Nest is an 1988 American science-fiction horror film directed by Terence H. Winkless in his directorial debut, produced by Julie Corman, and starring Robert King, and stars Robert Lansing, Lisa Langlois, Franc Luz, and Terri Treas. It is based on Eli Cantor's 1980 novel of the same name published under the pseudonym Gregory A. Douglas, and written by Robert King. The plot concerns a New England fishing village which is attacked by mutated cockroaches, as a result of an experiment gone wrong.

The Nest
Original theatrical poster
Directed byTerence H. Winkless
Produced byJulie Corman
Written byRobert King
Based onThe Nest
by Eli Cantor
StarringRobert Lansing
Lisa Langlois
Franc Luz
Terri Treas
Diana Bellamy
Music byRick Conrad
CinematographyRicardo Jacques Gale
Edited byStephen Mark
Jim Stewart
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
Running time
89 minutes
CountryUnited States


The sheriff of this small island town called North Port has a roach problem in his house. According to the local exterminator Homer (played by Stephen Davies), it turns out the whole town is about to have a big roach problem. Pets, and then people, begin to disappear or turn up dead and mutilated.

Although Sheriff Richard Tarbell (played by Frank Luz) is dating Lillian, the owner of the local eatery, his high school sweetheart Elizabeth Johnson returns to the island after a four-year absence and their romance blooms again. Elizabeth (played by Lisa Langlois) happens to be the daughter of the town's mayor, Elias Johnson (played by Robert Lansing), who is in cahoots with an evil corporation called INTEC that has been secretly breeding mutant roaches that are immune to normal insect repellants. They also seem to have the ability to assume the form of anything they kill, leading to some animal/roach hybrids and even 2 roach/human combos.


The filmmakers utilized 2,000 flying cockroaches during filming at Quicksilver Studios in Venice, Los Angeles. When some of the insects escaped into nearby dressing rooms, the American Humane Association were unable to assist them as the organization must be contacted prior to shooting on matters concerning insects.[1]


Critical responseEdit

The film received a mixed response from film critics.[1] Candice Russell of the Sun-Sentinel wrote: "Fulfilling the promise of The Hellstrom Chronicle, The Nest is a roach rout. It's no masterpiece, but in the last 40 minutes, fans of the genre get their money's worth."[2] Writing for the Los Angeles Times, Leonard Klady praised Winkless' direction and King's screenplay, noting that the film "hatches its clever plot extremely successfully."[3]

Ed Bank of The Pittsburgh Press awarded the film a one-and-a-half star, criticizing its storyline as being "too familiar."[4] The New York Daily News deemed the film "broke little in the way of new bug-movie ground."[1]

Home videoEdit

The Nest was first released on VHS by MGM/UA Home Video in 1989.[5] It was released on DVD for the first time by New Concorde Home Entertainment on August 28, 2001, now out of print.[6] Scream Factory, a subsidiary of Shout! Factory, released the film on Blu-Ray and DVD as a combo pack on February 19, 2013.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d "The Nest". American Film Institute. Retrieved March 6, 2019.
  2. ^ "No Masterpiece, `Nest` Will Make Skin Crawl". Sun Sentinel. April 21, 1988. Retrieved 13 December 2012.
  3. ^ "MOVIE REVIEW : 'Nest': Incredible Cockroaches, Credible Plot". Los Angeles Times. May 14, 1988. Retrieved 13 December 2012.
  4. ^ "Creepy 'Nest' hatches good villains, bad plot". The Pittsburgh Press. Jan 30, 1988. Retrieved 13 December 2012.
  5. ^ "The Nest". VHSCollector. Retrieved March 6, 2019.
  6. ^ "The Nest". Retrieved March 6, 2019.
  7. ^ "The Nest". Scream Factory. Retrieved March 6, 2019.

External linksEdit