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First off let me say one thing... B horror and drama are the only two genres
that really don't mix at all. That said, Komodo, one of the few films to
actually try to combine those two genres, isn't all that bad of a movie. The
special effects are in fact pretty impressive for a straight to video
cheesefest, and the cinematography is definitely worth noting. The
cinematographer somehow made Komodo look like a big budget studio piece,
with some very inventive camera angles and my favorite... a LOT of movement.
I don't know why... I'm just a fan of camera movement.
The acting, though it wasn't great, was decidedly above average for a film such as this. Jill Hennessy, star of TV's Law and Order, put forth a decent performance, but her... errr... assets seemed to have a lot more screen presence than she ever will. Kevin Zegers, one of the most talented actors of his generation, showed little of that talent here, sleep walking through his role with ease. The remainder of the supporting cast was average, with the exception of Patrick's grandmother (I think), who was just begging to be eaten. Remember that one moment in Deep Blue Sea when Samuel L Jackson got chomped up by the shark? Remember how you felt when that happened? Were you cheering? I thought so. That's exactly how you'll feel when she gets swallowed whole by the Komodo Dragon (cue cheesy Dum Dum Dum sound), and trust me, you'll be wondering why Jill Hennessy even bothers to try to save her. And thankfully it's in the film's first twenty minutes.
Well, all that said, the movie did have it's share of problems, and then some. First off, THERE WAS NO CLIMAX!
The biggest one however, was the movie's tremendous lack of focus. Many movies do have trouble focusing, but never has that been more evident than in Komodo. First off, the movie can't seem to decide whether it wants to be a Jurassic Park-esque sci fi horror flick, which it hints at in a few scenes, a Carnosaur-esque Jurassic Park rip off, which it also hints at, or a full fledged character study/drama, which I actually wish it had turned into, and also... yea, you guessed it... hints at that. It had the promise, starting off a subplot where Jill Hennessy's character has to crack through the veritable shell Kevin Zegers has created around himself, shielding him from reality. But, alas, that subplot was thrown out halfway through the movie, the main plot with the killer lizards taking over.
Secondly, the movie doesn't want to decide on who the main character is. It starts off with the focus on Kevin Zegers, shifting to Jill Hennessy, back to Zegers, then staying on the two for a while. Then, about an hour through, Zegers is completely forgotten about for over twenty minutes, not a second on screen during that time, until the end, where he's brought back for some reason. If you're gonna have a main character, you can't throw them off to the side?
I made my own Jurassic Park rip off (well, technically it was a spoof), a couple of years ago titled Catastrophe: Jurassic Park (With Cats), and I did the same thing. That was before I knew anything about filmmaking. Now that I do, I watch a Hollywood film like Komodo do the same thing and I'm blown away. Have these people even gone to film school?
Bottom line: Komodo is an entertaining B flick, but little else. But hey, if the considerably worse Bats made it to theaters, why didn't this?
Whether the komodo dragons are depicted with animatronics or computer graphics, they look top notch and scary - when you see them. (You don't see them as much as you might think.) However, the rest of the movie is A MESS! The characters were murky and unlikable, and the story was at times so lacking in key details, I am positive that the movie was either handed to the most incompetent editor alive, or that they didn't have enough money to shoot everything. (I don't think anyone could be that dumb to have chosen to film the script if it had actually been written the way the movie progesses onscreen.) Not enough gore or action for the red meat crowd anyway.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
"Komodo" isn't that bad but could've been a little better.
Years after a mysterious massacre, psychiatrist Victoria, (Jill Hennessy) brings traumatized soul-survivor Patrick Connally, (Kevin Zegers) back to the small island where his parents were killed. Bringing his Aunt Annie, (Nina Landis) along with her to help him recover from the incident. Although initial attempts to get through fail, she feels she's near a breakthrough when they're attacked by giant Komodo Dragons. Attempting to get away, they seek shelter with oil workers Bracken, (Simon Westaway) Oates, (Billy Burke) and Denby, (Paul Gleeson) who work on the island. Realizing that the Komodo's are here as a result of an accident years ago and are covering up their existence on the island, they all try to survive the creatures and help him overcome his fear of the island.
The Good News: This isn't all that bad of a creature feature. This is thankfully one of the better explanations for the creature's increased aggression. Rather than simply being normal creatures blown up to insane sizes through genetic testing that also made them crave meat, this one simply has them become hungry due to lack of natural food and the characters show up on the island at the worst time possible, forcing them to go after the only food source. It works from a nature stand-point, as this has happened where lack of food has made creatures savage and feral, adding credibility to the film, while also not sounding like every other flick out there in the genre. The pacing isn't all that bad, and even though there's no real stand-out action sequence or one happening every five minutes, this still manages to remain watchable. There's no real down-time devoted to needless exposition or useless scenes that deeper define characters that don't mean anything. The attacks, what few are shown on-screen, aren't that bad and actually come off pretty good, most notably the initial house encounter. The appearance of the creature that early in the film is a nice shock, the attempts to get away are pretty suspenseful and the pay-off is quite rewarding and really works. The highway escape has some spooky moments, and the final showdown is still modest and low-key, just like the film. The best scene is the encounter in the tunnels, which is full of action and features a lot of great moments. From the nice touch of the creature's step breaking away part of the floor to the trap set for it to the lucky break needed to escape the threat, it's a really fantastic sequence that throws in a great jump and plenty of action into the mix. The last part that works for the film is it's creatures. When they're not CGI-created and actually are depicted by models, they look great. There's a sense of them actually being there, they look close-enough for realism sake, and move like real ones. All together, this one isn't that bad.
The Bad News: This here did have a few problems with it. The biggest problem is that there's no real blood or gore in here. This is mostly determined by it's weak rating, which really results in harming the film more than anything. This robs the creatures of their menace, relegating most of their attacks to happen off-screen away from showing the viciousness that is shown when they pop back up on-screen. The attacks are pretty brutal-appearing yet there's only a couple attacks that are shown. There's very little blood at all, and more appears on the creature-aftermath than through the human victims, and that really lowers their threat-level if they don't vigorously tear into prey. The other problem, which really haunts most creature features, is the use of CGI to render the creatures. Despite the mix of the real-life puppets in several scenes, the times where the CGI creature comes into play are painfully obvious. The activity is far too exaggerated for living creatures, they don't blend in naturally and have an air of fake-ness around them. These here are it's main flaws.
The Final Verdict: While there's a few flaws, this one still has enough good points to make it a great recommendation for creature feature fans. Give it a chance if you're a fan of these films, or those curious, though if you're a gore-hound then at least seek caution with this one.
Rated PG-13: Violence, mild Language and creature violence
I liked this movie a lot. It had a decent cast (for a low budget), plenty of action and like-able characters. Sure, there was nothing brilliant here in terms of script or continuity, but it was very entertaining and fast-paced. A must-see. **** stars out of *****
I know, I know, you're thinking not ANOTHER Komodo Dragon movie. But
me, this one doesn't disappoint. Clearly it's not good, but that's what
makes it great. The Giant Dragons actually looked decent, and the acting
was not as bad everyone would think. The plot was crazy and not what a
person would call realistic, but therein lies the beauty. What's not to
love about an island full of crazy Komodo Dragons on a blood thirsty
rampage? Nothing, that's what!
If you are looking for an intellectual thriller, I have a feeling Komodo is not your cup of tea. On the other hand if you like having a few drinks with friends while trashing a very watchable movie this one is right up your alley. Dare I say, Komodo-riffic? Yes, I think I do.
This movie was great for what it was... sort of a utility grade Jurassic Park. It was about as hi-fi as any made for TV movie, but the concept was a bit different from most "killer reptile" movies, so that brought in a bit more interest. The lizards were very well conceived, and very exciting... but that's coming from someone who likes "killer reptile" movies. If you want amazing, watch Jurassic Park... if you want a diversion that's kinda exciting, and just a hair deeper than "Python," check out Komodo.
the story has been already reviewed excellent by IMDb.com itself and
many users so let's jump to the funny part: what the hell makes the
movie 10 star worthy to me? Well, first i'm in love with the movies
(including the bad ones). as long a film entertains me, it gets his 10
points...Period. Oh and 'komodo' entertained me a lot. If you like
animal creature features, i recommend 'jaws' or 'komodo'. If you like
horror, i recommend 'the exorcist' or 'komodo'. If you like comedy, i
recommend 'some like it hot' or 'komodo'...fill in some genre and
cinematic epic of choice...
but serious, 'komodo' is a great creature feature, done with love, packed with action,adventure&comedy and kids can watch it too, because there's no blood&guts.this is for the *boo,b-movie trash* screamers: the entire look of the movie doesn't looks cheap in anyway, neither the great special effects nor the superb cinematography) and my question to the studio lobby: why couldn't you bring such movies (or some of the other titles named above) to the big screen anymore? it's a shame...
15-foot long Komodo dragons elect to stalk the meagre pickings on an
island off North Carolina (though filmed in Australia), rather than be
starved into extinction. Holidaying family run afoul their insatiable
appetite, save for the adolescent boy, who must return to the island to
overcome the subsequent psychological trauma that has him on the verge
of being committed to an asylum. Child psychologist (Jill Hennessey)
encourages the boy to return along with his only remaining relative,
and soon discovers perils that occupy the mind, often exist in the
While the visual effects are well crafted, and, dare it be said, virtually seamless in terms of the juxtaposition of CGI and animatronics, the narrative is laboured and slow-moving, and never really develops the identities of the characters. Hennessey is unconvincing, and the supporting cast are stereotypical and superficially drawn (Westaway's evil corporate crony is embarrassing courtesy of the rubbish dialogue and forced cockney accent), but still manage to somehow command an attempted tear-jerking epitaph after they're fatally mauled.
While the prospect of the Komodo dragon preying on humans isn't that far-fetched under any circumstances, the formula is routine, and the emphasis misplaced the film attempts to build characters and invoke sympathy, when it should have concentrated on suspense via its already impressively manufactured title creatures. Sporadic thrills for the casual viewer, but too much bark and not enough bite for a genre fan.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Don't let the 3.6 rating fool you, this actually ain't a bad movie. It's
Jurassic Park, but it beats Anaconda. The special effects are pretty good
and the acting is great too. Only problem is it's predictable and the
is flat and and easy solution.
Watched this lowbudget action/horror take on Jurassic Park and it was surprisingly pretty good. Decent acting and effects. I would take this over Anaconda/Lake Placid anyday.Not a masterpiece but an ok timewaster.
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