New horror movie about killer spiders debuts to strong Rotten Tomatoes score, earning comparisons to Alien and Slither

(Image credit: Studio Canal)

Horror’s latest spider-themed movie has landed and it’s getting rave reviews, with fans calling it a must-watch for lovers of creature features. 

Sting, which premiered in US theatres on April 12, has debuted to a rather impressive 70% on Rotten Tomatoes. Although some critics are calling it a run-of-the-mill spidey slasher, others say it has earned its place in the beloved horror sub-genre, as Meagan Navarro from Bloody Disgusting writes: "Thanks to [Alyla] Browne’s bold performance and an emphasis on practical creature effects, Sting works as an entertaining throwback creature feature."

Daniel Rester from Battle Royale With Cheese went as far as to liken the film to one of the best sci-fi movies ever: "Sting works best in its final thirty minutes when it starts to feel like Alien in an apartment building." Similarly, Aaron Peterson from The Hollywood Outsider compared it to James Gunn's 2006 movie Slither, writing, "It is a wild, gory, taut, and fun monster mash of a film and one of the strongest of its kind in years."

However, for some critics, the film just didn't hit the mark, getting caught in a web of cliches so to speak, as Dais Johnston from Inverse said: "It’s a paint-by-numbers creature feature, but it goes over the lines in a distracting way." Simon Abrams from RogerEbert echoed, "The makers of Sting have obviously seen a lot of genre movies, but that cinephilia doesn’t translate."

Nevertheless, even though Sting probably isn't this generation's Arachnophobia, that doesn't make it any less of a horror movie, as Luke Y. Thompson from ComingSoon put it plainly: "Sting may be as predictable as any slasher movie, but delivers enough of the spider-goods to satisfy."

Directed by Kiah Roache-Turner, the arachnophobia-inducing movie follows a 12-year-old girl who has secretly been raising an unnervingly talented spider, only to discover that her once-loved pet is rapidly transforming into a giant flesh-eating monster. In an Evil Dead Rise-type situation, she and her family must fight for their survival in the apartment block against the eight-legged freak.

The cast includes Ryan Corr, Alyla Browne, Penelope Mitchell, Robyn Nevin, Noni Hazelhurst, Silvia Colloca, Danny Kim, and Jermaine Fowler. 

Sting is out in theatres in the US right now, and hits cinemas on May 31 in the UK. For more, check out our list of the best horror movies, or keep up to date with upcoming horror movies healing your way in 2024 and beyond. 

Editorial Associate, GamesRadar+

I am an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering TV and film for SFX and Total Film online. I have a Bachelors Degree in Media Production and Journalism and a Masters in Fashion Journalism from UAL. In the past I have written for local UK and US newspaper outlets such as the Portland Tribune and York Mix and worked in communications, before focusing on film and entertainment writing. I am a HUGE horror fan and in 2022 I created my very own single issue feminist horror magazine.