Monday, February 16, 2009

The Relic (1997)

Mwahahaha. All systems go for a crazy creature-feature! And this one brought to you by none-other then (yes, I know, I just learned his name too...) the mastermind behind the special effects of every serious CF in the known 'verse, including but not limited to (drum roll please): Aliens, Leviathan, Predator, Predator 2, Congo, Lake Placid, End of Days, Jurassic Park, etc. etc. etc. And here he has struck again. "But wait," you say, "this doesn't seem like a big budget bastard like those other films." Prepare to be stunned: this film actually cost a whopping $40 million, and trust me, for a film made in the 90's where the only pseudo-recognizable actor is Tom Sizemore, that's pretty fucking huge. Fed to the creature, no doubt. And that's the best part: filming was delayed because the creature wasn't ready. They didn't even include the monster until the last half of the film because they didn't actually have it! Talk about cutting it close! And they still released late! But in this case, it's almost worth it. For once, there's a serious and somewhat tumultuous buildup with something actually worth waiting for at the other end. Hallelujah! And let me tell, the creature is fucking radd. It has scary teeth and realistic movements. Super better than Congo if I do say so myself. And the movie is totally self-contained. A few stereotypes of Amazonians and anthropologists? Yes. A few far-fetched biology concepts? You betcha. But overall, you've got several of my favorite things: shamans, fungi, and bad-ass mother-fucking monsters! Check, check and check. And it's set in a museum! Based on the techno-thriller novel written in 1995, this fabulous creature-feature is helmed by the clearly underrated Peter Hyams, of Outland, Timecop and End of Days fame, all of which are movies I'm proud to have in my collection. I admit, I put this movie off because it looked like a flat-lining horror film. And I guess it kind of was. But it was also super awesome and ultimately worth the slow developments. And you have to give some credit for the realistic, albeit completely impossible to see, lighting. It's the monster that counts!

Final Judgment: "A Crichtonian-influenced masterpiece of special effects and museum oddities!/Probably the most significant thing Tom Sizemore has ever done with his life!/Gnashing teeth, buckets of blood and a mutated anthropologist = great viewing!"


Mike J said...

After you become a famous archaeologist/anthropologist, I would be honored to curate a museum full of the extra-dimensional horrors (and delights!) that you uncover in your travels.

Tesla said...

You're too good to me Mike J!