The Best Way to Enjoy Fried Worms is to Learn How to Eat Them (Movie)

Directed by Bob Dolman and featuring music by Mark Mothersbaugh and Robert Mothersbaugh, How to Eat Fried Worms is an American comedy film from 2006. It's based on the Thomas Rockwell children's book of the same name, which was published in 1973. The film was also created by Walden Media and released by New Line Cinema.

Production started in 1998, and on August 25, 2006, it was released in theaters across the United States and Canada. Luke Benward, Adam Hicks, Halle Eisenberg, Austin Rogers, Andrew Gillingham, Alexander Gould, Blake Garrett, and Philip Daniel Bolden are among the film's stars. Many critics panned the film, while others praised it.

Plot [ edit ]

When Billy Forrester eats too much, he gets sick and throws up. His family, Mitch, Helen, and little brother Woody, have recently relocated to a new city. Billy complains to his mom that he doesn't want to be "the new kid" at school. She reassures him that he'll meet cool people and that everything will work out.

Joe Guire, his two "toaders," Plug and Bradley, and the rest of his gang, including Benjy, Techno-Mouth, Twitch, and Donny, set their sights on Billy and bully him at school. Billy's lunch box is stolen by Plug and Bradley. Billy is hiding behind Erika Tansy, a tall but often mocked girl.

When Billy opens his thermos for lunch, he dumps out a bunch of live worms. In a state of near-vomiting disgust, he Joe inquires of Billy as to whether or not he partakes in worm cuisine. Billy boasts, "I eat 'em all the time," before hurling a worm at Joe's head. Adam Simms, a nerd, was certain that Joe was going to punch Billy with "The Death Ring," which, according to urban legend, causes the death of the person Joe punches in eighth grade.

Billy is on his way home when he is met by Joe, Plug, and Benjy. Joe challenges Billy to eat ten worms without getting sick this upcoming Saturday or else he must wear worms in his underwear while walking around school. Despite his reservations, Billy accepts the bet because he knows he has no way of getting out of it.

Later that day, Billy will be working alongside Adam. A park ranger chases after the boys as they grill the first worm "Le Big Porker" in the park because they are not accompanied by an adult. After that, Adam takes them to his uncle Ed's restaurant, The Brown Toad, where he has an omelette made with the second worm. But his uncle steals the omelet and feeds it to the school's principal. Adam then has to re-cook the second and third worms, this time dunking them in the fryer and smearing them with liver juice to create what he calls "The Greasy Brown Toad Bloater Special." As soon as Ed sees the worms, he orders the boys out of his eatery. Billy's mouth gets burned from the fourth worm, "The Burning Fireball," so Twitch and Techno-Mouth defect from Joe's team and become Billy's new best friends. Then, Billy, Techno-Mouth, Twitch, and Adam head to the local corner store. When they enter, they discover Adam playing Dance Dance Revolution; however, after one of the boys spills his drink on the machine, it explodes and they are asked to leave. While playing on the playground, Billy devours the "Magni-Fried," "Barfmallo," and "Peanut Butter and Worm Jam Sandwich" worms. "

When the owner of the bait shop where the boys ate dinner is away, Billy eats the next two worms (named "The Green Slusher" and "Radioactive Slime Delight," respectively) while Donny microwaves the worm. However, upon her unexpected return, she gives chase to them for briefly reprimanding them for breaking into her bait shop. When Joe uses dishonest means to prevent Billy from consuming the final worm in Worm A La Mud, his entire crew betrays him and joins Billy's team. Erika uses her archery skills to deliver the last worm to Billy, who eats it just in time. Joe's brother Nigel tries to humiliate and bully him, but Billy and the gang stand up for Joe, telling Nigel to leave him alone, and Nigel eventually does.

Billy spends the night deliberating and then goes back to class the next day. He tells Joe that Adam accidentally put the second worm in his omelet at the Brown Toad, and that the principal, Burdock, ate it. They agree that there was no clear victor and, as such, both stuff a handful of worms down their pants before heading down the hall. They are then nearly caught by Burdock when Billy has a worm fall out of his pants and Joe covers it up with his shoe. The kids run outside to celebrate when Burdock returns to his office, and Billy and Joe each pull a worm out of their underwear and toss it high into the air.

Cast [ edit ]

After Imagine Entertainment purchased the film rights in 1996, production on the movie finally got underway that year. First-time screenwriter John August was hired for the job, and the film's director, Thomas Schlamme, was set to helm the production. Despite working together on four different drafts, August and Schlamme never found a true rapport with one another. When it came time for revisions, Bob Dolman was brought in. After Universal Pictures put the movie in turnaround, Nickelodeon Movies bought it. Joe Nussbaum succeeded Schlamme after he resigned, so that clause [3] was never used. Nickelodeon ultimately decided not to move forward with the film, and it sat in development purgatory until Walden Media stepped in to secure financing and oversee production. In addition to having New Line Cinema take over distribution, Dolman opted to direct his own script. Production started in July of 2005. [5]

Since very little of August's original screenplay was kept in the final product, he opted out of receiving a screenwriting credit under WGA rules. [6]

Changes from the Book [ edit ]

A bet between two boys to eat earthworms is a common thread between the film and the book, but the two versions couldn't be more different in tone and setting. The book centers on four teenage boys, all of whom are friends and spending the summer together. In order to win fifty dollars, Billy must eat fifteen worms in fifteen days. This money will be used to purchase a dirt bike.

The fact that he is new to school, that Joe is a bully, that Billy has a fragile constitution, and that Joe threatens him with a Death Ring are all plot points that are only present in the film adaptation but not in the book. He beats the odds and wins the bet, as opposed to tying it like in the movie. For example, in the book he only eats nightcrawlers, and the girl who helps him in the movie, Erika, is not introduced until the sequel, How to Fight a Girl.

Reception [ edit ]

Box office [ edit ]

With $4,003,537 in its opening weekend in North America, the film debuted at number eleven. After seven weeks, it had grossed a total of $13,096,314 from the United States alone ($13,040,527) and $55,787 from other countries. [1]

Reactions from Critics [ edit ]

The critical reception to the film was mostly positive, but it did receive some negative feedback. Reviews have been mixed, with only 61% of 76 critics on review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes giving it a positive review. 1/10 "This Fear Factor for kids is good-natured and tasty enough," reads the site's consensus. The movie received a 56 on Metacritic, which indicates "mixed or average reviews." [8]

The film's depiction of typical kid behavior earned it four out of five "fingers" from the Dirty Critic. James Berardinelli, writing for ReelViews, gave it a tepidly positive review (2). 1 2 stars out of 4) but felt that there wasn't enough of a target audience because "it's aimed at pre-teen males and doesn't make many concessions to members of other demographics." He continued, "How to Eat Fried Worms is one of the last of a dying genre: the live-action family film. This is a tough genre to break into because even the best films in it (like Holes and The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants) don't have a huge fan base. The Boston Globe [9] ' Reviewer Ty Burr gave it 2 stars out of 4 and said, "There's a kid named Billy, and he eats worms on a dare, and that's about all the movie has in common with its source." In reality, that's all the film adaptation needs to share with its inspiration. My daughter's nine-year-old friend overheard her friend saying, "This is really disgusting," during the movie. However, he did add, "But I like it." "
How to Eat Fried Worms is the least impressive of the unpretentious children's book adaptations produced by family-oriented Walden Media (Because of Winn-Dixie, Hoot, Holes), from the perspective of a parent standing two feet above the ground. [10]

At-Home Press Announcement [ edit ]

New Line Home Entertainment released the DVD of How to Eat Fried Worms on December 5, 2006.

Accolades [ edit ]

Award Category Nominee Result For Best Young Artist of 2007, See: Young Artist Award Young Actors Cast in a Feature Film In this episode, we have: Luke Benward, Hallie Kate Eisenberg, Alexander Gould, Adam Hicks, Ryan Malgarini, Ty Panitz, Philip Bolden, Blake Garrett, Andrew Gillingham, Austin Rogers, Nick Krause, Stephan Bender, and Alexander Agate. Won Best Family Feature Film (Comedy or Musical) – Supporting Young Actress Ms. Hallie Kate Eisenberg Nominated

Soundtrack [ edit ]

References [ edit ]

  1. ^ a b The Step-by-Step Guide to Consuming Fried Worms (2006) Money in the Bank Movies on the Web Database On this day in 2006, October 13th, Retrieved April 5, 2015
  2. ^ On December 11, 1996, Michael Fleming wrote: Two pitches at U are hit by "simple" writers. Variety Retrieved May 2, 2022
  3. ^ The Associated Press, Andrew Hindes, 8 October 1998 Undiscovered 'Worms' Variety Retrieved May 2, 2022
  4. ^ Dade Hayes and Claude Brodesser published their findings on this topic on June 21st, 2000. Nussbaum will reportedly burn "Worms." Variety Retrieved May 2, 2022
  5. ^ Micheal Fleming (May 30th, 2005). New Line and Walden appreciate the 'Worms' adaptation. Variety Retrieved May 2, 2022
  6. ^ A New Look at Fried Worms" Augustine, John Tuesday, September 25th, 2006 Retrieved May 2, 2022
  7. ^ Learning the Art of Consuming Fried Worms. Faulty Critics A Company Called Fandango Retrieved October 8, 2021 Edit this at Wikidata
  8. ^ The Best Way to Enjoy Fried Worms on Metacritic a href="MY_REDIRECT_PREFIX" target="_blank" rel="noreferrer noopener">img alt="Edit this at Wikidata" src="/image/empty.gif" data-src="//upload.wikimedia
  9. ^ Review of "How to Eat Fried Worms." preview reelviews net
  10. ^ The Boston Entertainment Industry Boston com

Sources [ edit ]

  •, Last Accessed on June 18, 2008

Internet resources [ edit ]

  • What to Do When You See Fried Worms on IMDb
  • Box Office Mojo: A Guide to Eating Fried Worms
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