Crocodile – Tobe Hooper – 2000

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One of my favorite things about most Tobe Hooper films is he tends to cast interesting looking people and makes stories about growly folks doing growly things. Imagine my surprise when a bunch of slick faced young actors populate the film Crocodile. Now, they aren’t bad actors, they just really, really look like actors.

The film has a decent plot, kids go down the river on a party boat. Giant Crocodile eats kids. Not too complicated right? Except I cant really remember any of the characters. There’s fat dude, skinny dude, slutty girl and less slutty girl. Who knows? I know I was ready to watch a giant Crocodile eat these kids. Some of them eventually get eaten and it is in these moments that the film really shines, well, glimmers?

The problem is, as lame as these kids are the film champions them instead of the beast. I wanted to be rooting for the monster the whole time, cause these kids suck big time. But instead the screenplay pushes for some sort of romantic redemption between the jackoff protagonist and his girlfriend and even his boyfriend.

See, Tobe Hooper films, like TCM, Lifeforce and Eaten Alive are all incredibly bleak and cynical horror films. There is no redemption, only horror. Those characters in those films were ten times more interesting than these college crocodile bait jerks. But still 3(three) of these kids survive the film. What the heck? In a great horror film you might have no survivors or one survivor with impending doom. Give me a break with this happy ending horseshit.

Harrison Young and Terrence Evans give good relief to the homogenized blandness of the twenty somethings with their fun if all too brief portrayal of the sheriff and Shurkin the Croc-Master. These actors provide the only pathos and humor in the film.

The star of the film is Flat-Dog the Crocodile. The effects are pretty great. There were lots of giant models built so that the creature could actually eat the kids, so what this film has going for it are the bar none best close up shots of college kids being eaten by a giant crocodile. Simply the best.

The gore is also top notch. The problem is too few attacks, too little gore. At the end of the film after the best friend has been eaten and he start getting into some love story melodrama, the croc vomits up the friend and exits, leaving us with 3(three) survivors. Geez. What a kick in the face. It’s like taking back a kill.

I’m a big fan of Hooper’s and I really only recommend this to fans of Killer Crocodile movies. 

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