Dino Dicember #2: Raptor Ranch / The Dinosaur Experiment (2012)

Because Jurassic Farm was too obvious, or lacked the everpopular combo of assonance and allitteration. Still better than the other alternative title this movie goes under, you don’t get much more generic that “The Dinosaur Experiment”.

Just make it nice and obvious for everyone.

Now i would discuss the plot, but there’s very little in that regard. In Fossile Ridge, a reclusive mad scientist has been secretly experimenting with bird DNA, and managed to make dinosaurs while hiding in a Texan cattle ranch. One of the dinos escapes, starts killing people, which prompts the FBI and the local police to investigate.

And by investigate i mean the police and FBI at a point disappear until the very end, effectively contributing nothing to the plot, because one of the FBI agents is played by Lorenzo Lamas, who clearly didn’t had it in its contract. Not that it matters, you never see the dinosaurs killing the first victims, or never learn why the hell this old doctor wanted to create dinosaurs to begin with (regardless how he did it), because it’s one of those movies where contributors have to piece together (often with educated guesses) the scattered bits of logic in messes like this, and explain stuff that the movie never really bothers to elaborate on, or even explain.

Yeah, this movie has like 30 minutes of plot, at best, the rest is made up of filler, dumb shit and typical b-movie stereotypes, with characters that are paper-thin as you’d expected, from horny teenager douchebags (in the “laymaster disaster”, “whorish one”, “whiny douche” and “disgusting fatass” varieties) to sleazy texans butchers-gas station owners (which are a thing, according to movies like this), old geezers ready to ogle a normal teen… who just refuel a vehicle without doing the “carwash routine” or shit like that. And the goth girl, who i actually like because she seems to enjoy the situation of dinosaurs hunting them down, just because she’s completely bonkers.

Of course, alongside the pimp-attired black entertainer who speaks in jive and acts like an old gay stereotype, let’s just sandwich these cliches together at this point, who cares. You know, i’m kinda glad this is yet another low budget movie with not good audio mixing and people speaking in… i guess “regional gibberish” is the term, because the dialogue i could hear made me want to see the dinosaurs chomps this imbeciles. Which is more than i expected, given how utterly incompetent this movie is.

Exhibit A: the dinosaurs. They clearly didn’t have much of a budget, but for the most part, they are realized in very shit CG. When they aren’t, so you also get a distracting game of CG and cheap but not so cheap physical props, on top of the facts these fuckin dinosaurs keep changing size in every shot, now they look big towering cheap digital monsters, now tiny, weirdly colored giant lizards (one looks like a Primal Rage character), lacking any sense of weight or space. So it’s a mild consolation you don’t get just raptors, but also a T-Rex and a Megalosaurus, because they end up killing each other, otherwise this ensemble of idiots would have to actually think.

At least you get a decent amount of gore (not good, but gore), and i will give Raptor Ranch this: it actually looks more like a movie than i expected, so there is some production value here. It’s just a step above being a total amauterish production where the director grabbed his friends and relatives, rented a semi-recent camera for a couple of days and filmed it near home, in a location that didn’t require any permit.

It’s NOT that, but it’s hard to say you’ll recognized anyone in the cast outside of Lamas (who apparently was on a “raptor rampage” of his own at the time), the only other actor billed on the cover is is Jana Mashonee, which seems to be a popular singer in Texas and nearby, on her second acting role. My guess is that she is (or was) popular in the U.S., and nowhere else, i could be wrong, i really don’t know, i live in Italy.

Despite the bad comedy, inane one-dimensional stereotypes, barely plot with big holes that stretches itself way , incompetent composition that results in really crappy CG dinosaurs blessed with the ability to grow and shrinz in size as they please, there is some satisfaction in the standard act of seeing idiots getting eaten by rampaging killer dinosaurs, and some fun to be had, more due to incompetence breeding accidental jokes than actually funny commedy bits planned as such.

Mind you, Dan Bishop (who apparently never directed or starred in any other movie, according to IMDB) and Shlomo May-Zur’s movie is garbage, basically a peta-low budget, way worse version of Carnosaur (they even do the dinosaurs’ POV with a green night vision effect), now in Texas, but it’s kinda entertaining regardless, and surprisingly not the slog i expected it to be, because at least the “narrative” moves fast enough to not make you fall asleep, even if it’s due to the movie not focusing on absolutely anything, besides delivering a constant stream of stupid shit happening.

I’ve watched way worse, watched way better, the Earth rotates on its axis each 24 hours in respect to the Sun, but i’d be completely insane if i gave this one more than a 3/10.

So i won’t.

Now, RAGE!

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