DVD region 2. Anchor Bay Entertainment.
a killer shark-octopus hybrid heading this way, so please leave
the marina in an orderly fashion.”
Yes, Sharktopus is here, and it’s everything
you’d hope it to be. While other SyFy destined movies like
Mega Shark vs Giant Octopus have failed to deliver
the goods beyond the trailer – ironically having too much
actual plot and passable production values and not enough monster
action – this film knows exactly what it is and why you
are watching, and is determined to make you happy.
A slumming Eric Roberts stars as a Mad Scientist who has created
the Sharktopus as a new weapon for the Navy –
but when the control device is damaged, the monster goes on the
rampage across the Mexican coast, and only his daughter, a renegade
shark hunter and possibly a pushy TV reporter can stop it.
Plot is thankfully kept to a minimum here – we have several
attacks by the hilariously dreadful monster in the first ten minutes,
and they just keep coming, often with characters saying something
like “there’s no such thing as a Sharktopus"
just before being grabbed by a CGI tentacle and pulled into the
water. There are wonderful moments with bungie jumpers snatched
out of the air, boat painters killed as they discuss the worst
way to die ("oh no, not like this", cries one
as a tentacle grabs him) and of course the shamelessly brilliant
sight of Sharktopus leaving the water to continue its attack on
if you are looking for quality cinema, this isn’t for you
– by most reasonable standards, this is terrible. But it’s
also hugely entertaining. The performances are just what you’d
hope for - while Roberts swills whiskey (you wonder if this was
in the screenplay, or just something he needed to get through
the movie!) and hams it up, the rest of the cast, straight-faced
and trying hard, struggle with the combination of bad dialogue
and cliched characters, while the supporting actors often Birdemic
levels of woodenness. The CGI is terrible, as you’d expect,
and the scene is set by the opening title sequence, which looks
as though the filmmakers bought some shaky beach footage from
a passing tourist (the handheld footage in the film appears to
have been shot by someone who found the camera too heavy) as the
worst music ever plays on the soundtrack. This might
make Sharktopus sound a poor excuse for entertainment
–but instead, the elements combine to make it a deliriously
low-rent (albeit knowingly low-rent) slice of schlock.
The TV origins are clear – the one thing missing here is
the gratuitous nudity expected in an exploitation film (there
are plenty of bikini babes, but none of them lose their clothes),
especially from producer Roger Corman (who also gets a cameo as
a lecherous beach bum). Some Humanoids from the Deep-style
sexism would have been the icing on the cake! There’s plenty
of gore of course – US TV censorship being as backward as
it is – but no-one swears either, resulting in classic lines
like ”got you, you mother”.
So, for once, a SyFy channel film that actually lives up to the
promise, and with a UK RRP of just £5.99, there’s
no excuse no to snap it up!
IT NOW (UK)
IT NOW (USA)