The new millennium brought upon us many things.
And a movie called Blood Surf was sure one of them, though it sound more like a videogame title.
In hindsight, it’s perfect specimen for this month dual theme, as it answers a question nobody asked, as in “what if we made a shark movie, but with a croc/gator instead?”.
It’s hard to say if this was the intention all along or a mid-production “stop and swoop” pivoting, as the plot it’s about a group of friend that come up with a new extreme sport, the “blood surf”, which consists in putting chum in the water to attract sharks, then riding a surfboard through the pack of blood-frenzied animals. As they try to shoot a promotional video for the blood surf they end up attacked by a saltwater crocodile, then end up crashing on a pirate occupied island.
Australia is a wild place, at least according to these movies.
Gotta say, this movie it’s very review friendly, as in the first 2 minutes they take a dig at Jaws, while they also have an animatronic killer animal that you’d wish it worked and looked as good as in the – by then – 25 years old movie they made fun out of the gate. It’s not even that mean spirited of a dig, but it sets the tone perfectly right away and lets you know what’re you gonna get from direct-to-video killer croc movie: dumbass characters that you eagerly want to seen eaten, random sex scenes , some “’tude” that confirms how the early 2000s were a continuation of the 90s in more than cronological sense, and the cliches ripped off from “that movie”, like an Australian Quint stand-in that has a vendetta against the croc, he’s grizzled and obssessed, etc.
The effects are a mixed bag, despite being done by a fx studio created by Corman alumni John Buechler (better know for its works on the Carnosaur movie series). One feel like they blew the budget on the crocodile animatronic, which looks good for a direct-to-video/TV movie, but it’s honestly handled very badly, as you never get the feeling you’re looking at something alive, you can’t suspend your disbelief, you’re constantly aware that you’re looking at an expensive rubber crocodile. Especially when they show the creature swimming… as in they drag the animatronic in the water, the thing never moves any of its fucking legs to swim, it’s that obvious.
And in the rare occasions when it’s a digital effect… you’ll piss your pants laughing at how bad the effects can be, to say nothing of the istance where it transictions from the background digital croc to the animatronic one in the close ups. At least some of the practical gore looks decent, but it feels like a monkey paw thing, so yes, this one has a better looking prop for the killer creature, but it might as well had been crappy CG because it ultimately feels as “believable”.
It’s also that kind of cheap killer animal movie that has to use stock footage of real sharks eating or swimming, and don’t expect much from most of the kills, the most graphic one is the demise of the crocodile but otherwise the most you get it’s the movie cutting away and then someone opening a squib in water and making some of the characters personal effects (hat, shoes, etc) floating up.
For extra shlock points, there’s some bums and tits, a sex scene between the obligatory bleached hair duderino loudmouth and what it’s not an “under age” girl, and a “comical” attempted rape scene by one of the pirates, which is not even graphic and feels more like a Scooby Doo skit.
All i guess deemed necessary for this thing to reach 80 minutes (plus credits).
This was the last movie Trimark Pictures released (before being folded into Lionsgate Entertaiment), guess the Leprechaun movies and crap like Pinocchio’s Revenge weren’t enough to keep them going. But at least they went out with a decent “so bad its good” flick, pure dumbassery but entertaining enough, with some genuine laughs. Cute.