"Crocodile" Movie Review
Starring Mark McLachlan, Caitlin Martin, Chris Solari, and D.W. Reiser
Tobe Hooper is truly the king. Some may scoff, citing previous works like Billy Idol's "Dancing With Myself" video, but I LIKE that video!
Hooper once again asserts his supremacy by bringing us this ever-so-delightful tale of college students who get eaten by a crocodile. If you'd asked me a few weeks ago, I would have told you that the best crocodile-eating-people movie was definitely Lake Placid. This is no longer the case.
Trust me; you want Crocodile.
Alright, so maybe the fiberglass crocodile floats a little cockeyed in the water. And maybe the CGI crocodile looks so unreal, you half expect it to whip out a top hat and cane and break into a tapdance routine. But with fun like this, who cares?
You'll get everything you need to know from the back of the box. Horny half-nekkid college students go to the lake for spring break. Giant crocodile eats them one by one.
Really; what more could you want from a movie?
One of the many pleasant surprises to be found in Crocodile is that, unlike pretty much every horror movie ever made, the main characters do not start out as strangers and fall in love by the end of the movie. In fact, the main characters start out as a happy couple, but about a third of the way through the movie the girl finds out he's been cheating on her, so she throws him out of the room. By the end of the movie they're working together to try and kill the crocodile, but this does not bring them back together again. In fact, their proximity just makes them bitch and whine and snipe each other more than if they were apart.
This, my friends, is revolutionary.
Particularly since it's coupled with a filming style that bathes about every other scene with fuzzy, golden, end-of-summer lighting in quantities that haven't been seen since Stand By Me hit the theaters. With lighting like that, you'd expect Crocodile to be a nostalgic look back at the carefree days of youth. Which it is, in a way; albeit a nostalgic look back at the days of doing body shots off the town slut, drinking until you puke, and waking up face-down on the ground because everyone else was too drunk to help you back to the house.
Hooper's sense of cinematic timing is simply superb. Crocodile builds the suspense just up to the point where you're ready to give up and go watch something else, then it unleashes the title character to bite boats in half, snap down people like they're popcorn shrimp, smash its way into a general store, and generally tear the place down in a fit of reptilian pique.
The crocodile itself has a legitimate grievance against the mammals, who keep stomping into her nests and playing field hockey with her eggs. You can hardly blame them, though; according to some theories, that's how we killed off the dinosaurs (and a damned fine job we did of it, too). The movie itself seems to take a neutral stance on the smashing of nests, which is nice, because nothing is more irksome than being made to Understand Why The Monster Kills.
No one cares Why The Monster Kills. All we care is THAT It Kills, and kill it does. You can search up and down the video aisles, but you'll be hard pressed to beat Crocodile, which has a penchant for swallowing people whole. And in the end, isn't that what it's all about?
Yes. Yes it is.
Summary: Croc-arrific fun!
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