Monday, 18 October 2010

Yes, you could refer to it as "Lake Flacid"

What do you get if you mix together Bill Pullman, Bridget Fonda, Breendon Gleeson, Oliver Platt and Betty White? Some people go the idea to make sequels. I enjoyed Lake Placid as a movie, it was a great mix of comedy and monster film.

First up, we come to Lake Placid 2, released into discount bins in 2007. This movie was largely a repeat of the original movie, and yet failed in many ways that the original worked... and failed in many ways that it tried on its own. What it repeated was the sexual tension mix of the main leads, the old lady by the lake, the industrialist come to kill the monster, and, of course, crocodiles. Any idea of charm was not captured in these roles, and where the original was about screwed up human relationships, this tried and got it wrong. (The only real moment was where Ahmad quit.) And then there's the subplot of the teenagers coming to the lake and being threatened, 'cos no monster movie has ever done that before! Gah! And the old lady... Betty White was brilliant, Cloris Leachman was trying to recreate the part. Notably John Schneider is the Sheriff, and as for other big name roles... the closest you get is Sam McMurray. And, most disappointingly, eight years after the original, the crocodile CGI effect is just terrible. Yuck.

Then, three years later, on the Syfy network, we get Lake Placid 3. Colin Ferguson is the sheriff... no wait, not the sheriff, the animal guy. The sheriff is in fact Michael Ironside. Yancy Butler plays the hunter Reba... And, you know what, I respect this movie a lot more than number two. They didn't repeat the basic plot, although the basic basic plot, of crocodiles attacking people, is of course the same, and indeed there are teenagers like in two, but this time they actually have their own characters. Reba is one of the best characters in the film. The crocodiles, while still CGI, are better... although killing them is done in rather more unbelievable ways than in the previous two. And, best of all, not all of the good guys make it! Yay, makes a change!

Ultimately, please, leave the series alone. If you feel the need to enjoy the series, just rescreen number one. I must my own DVD of it now...


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