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Dinocroc vs. Supergator


They do the mash — the monster mash.

Rod Lott August 2nd, 2011

In the opening scene of "Dinocroc vs. Supergator," the two title creatures bust out of the Drake Game Preserve research facility on the Hawaiian island of Kauai where they're being held.

dinocrocvssupergator
How? Don't ask questions. Just accept it. If you're going to ask questions, these are not the 87 minutes you want.

See, Dinocroc (2004's "Dinocroc") is your everyday crocodile with prehistoric spikes down his spine, while Supergator (2007's "Supergator") is an alligator who stands hilariously on raptor-like hind legs (but, despite his name, bears no cape). Or maybe it's the other way around; it's not like the characters in the movie can look for nametags. Anyhoo, the creatures are together at last! They travel as a pair. It's kinda cute.

They gobble up so many third- or fourth-tier actors over the running time: scientists not smart enough to run the other way, mouth-breathers, horny collegians, bikini Barbies, a photographer "for Mother Nature magazine," a slasher movie director hoping for a threesome, and so on. The back half of a horse is left behind in a field, and it has more personality any of than the aforementioned victims.

All hope rests on a blonde park ranger who's not unattractive (Amy Rasimas, "Girls Gone Psycho") and a government worker for EcoGrow (Corey Landis, "Camel Spiders") who is. Corporate slime Jason Drake (the late David Carradine) wants to sweep the genetically engineered escapees under the rug, so he hires a wanna-be Indiana Jones named The Cajun (Rib Hillis — that's not a typo: His name is really Rib, and he's soon to be seen in "Piranhaconda") to hunt them down.

However, Mr. Cajun eventually switches sides to the good guys. Their brilliant solution to their very big problem is to get the reptilian beasts to fight. (I like my 6-year-old son's suggestion better: "If I had a car, I'd get in my car and go 140 miles an hour or whatever the last number is.") This leads to the inevitable title-justifying finale, which is worth the wait. To get technical, the flick should be called "Dinocroc vs. Supergator vs. Explosive Tossed Into a Barn," but exec producer Roger Corman has been at the biz long enough to know how to get that steak to sizzle.

The experience of watching "DCvSG" (are the cool bloggers calling it that yet?) can be summed up in a scene set in the hospital. "What are you doing?" asks Delia Sheppard, veteran of many an erotic thriller from the '90s ("Animal Instincts," "Mirror Images," "Secret Games," et al.). Growls the evil British woman wielding a syringe full of cyanide in response, "Something bad!"

Bad, but good.

Director Jim Wynorski ("The Hills Have Thighs") has no arty presumptions about what kind of film he's making. Therefore, he knows how to cast these things to keep the pace bouncy enough for male viewers, if you know what I mean and I think that you do. (If not, here are some names for you to image-search on Google: Carrie Stevens, Tamie Sheffield, Aurelia Scheppers, Brandi Williams and/or Katy Magnuson.) He also knows which shots from "Jurassic Park" are worth ripping off.

Of all of Corman monster mash-ups that have premiered on Syfy on their merry way to Blu-ray, I think this one may be the most enjoyable. In fact, it's even more enjoyable than part of my 1996 trip to Kauai (the part where the airline lost our luggage and I got sunburned so bad that my entire body itched something fierce, but still). Wynorski even nods to his boss by putting in a plug for Corman's own 1958 adventure, "She Gods of Shark Reef."

Finally, to go just slightly off-topic: How many movies are going to call themselves one of Carradine's final efforts? I've now reviewed four that bill themselves as such. When's the cut-off? Ooh, poor choice of words? —Rod Lott

 
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