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Movie Reviews

Remember that time every year when everything in the theatres is worth its weight in Pauly Shore jokes? Well, this is the season when it all comes out on video. Hence, the only thing even vaguely interesting that I saw on video this month was this trashy horror flick that missed theatres by a country mile. I debated reviewing Coyote Ugly, but dignifying that blatant example of pandering to demographics with more than a sentence makes me feel morally corrupt, kind of like watching NBC sitcoms for more than half an hour. Anyway, Crocodile is the latest attempt from fallen horror moive great Tobe Hooper to pay the electric bill. Tobe, as all try horror movie buffs should know, buts onto the scene in 1974 with The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and subsequently burst right off the scene when it was revealed that he was not in fact a director but merely a gibbering lab monkey who had somehow gotten a hold of a 16mm camera and some independent fuinding. Texas is a brilliant film. Crocodile is not. This is because Tobe has not lived up to the incredible promise he showed in his early years. Judging from previous from such Hooper films as Night Terrors and Eaten Alive, I had always assumed that this was because he was insane. However, and interview with Hooper included on the DVD of Crocodile (don't ask) appears to prove that he is fairly lucid most of the time. Thus, I am forced to attribute such atrocites as the Invaders From Mars remake to either the aforementioned monkey hypothesis or just way too much caffeine. In the end, it makes no difference, since most of his movies are generaly unwatchable anyway. Crocodile is, shockingly enough, about a giant crocodile. Think Lake Placid's smaller, stupider, slightly deformed younger brother. This is Tone's second crocodile movie, the first being Eaten Alive, and he seems to have made a marked improvement sicne his last attempt, in that Crocodile appears to have some variety of plot, which, no matter how cliched, beats an hour and a half of Marilyn Burns screaming whie Neville Chambers cackles over a plastic alligator. This is not to suggest that Crocodile is worth watching. No no, it's not even worth picking up the video box to scrawl foul language in the dust behind it. But at least in makes some logical sense, which, if you're familiar with Tobe's canon, is a pleasant surprise. The plot consists of a group of drunken teenagers cruising around in a houseboat during Spring Break in the Florida everglafes, where they encouter a hung-over computer animators idea of a giant crocodile. As you can imagine, the croc works its way through the expendable portions of the cast until just the lead, the love interest, and the smarmy comic relief remain. After that, it's anyone's guess as to how it turns out, since I got bored and watched Planet of the Vampires instead, and according to the Internet Movie Database's reviews section, no one else has ever seen this movie. I think it's safe to assume that everyone lives happily ever after, including the crocodile, given the modern environmental slant to most creature features nowadays. I won't bother to comment on the film's acting or special effects, since it doesn't have much of either, but I will go on record as saying that his film has proved to me that Tobe Hooper is not insane. Just really, really, boring.

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