Thursday, June 25, 2009


WHAT THE MONSTER TAUGHT ME: Low Blood Sugar + Doped Fishies = Massacre On Cupcake Beach


Long Jaws (or whatever the hell barracudas have. Boo!), a marine biologist with questionable taste in bitey friends, a town of pissy fuckoffs, a discount Carl Kolchak, Doc Rutger Hauer, Country Physician, beloved but still strange 70s boobs, not enough tartar sauce, the velvet painting of Jesus with a loaf of bread on his head Easter Egg, Sheriff Lobo rejects, the old man crotch shot motif, and the Wilson Sisters nowhere in sight.

More details here.


The coastal town of Palm Cove has been besieged by an invasion upon humanity unseen since the days of locusts and frogs falling from the sky. And that infestation is – meddlin’ college kids. A group of snoopy teen marine biologists are taking samples from the local beaches and discover abnormal levels of chemicals dumped from a local factory. Meanwhile back in the town, reports of road rage incidents, husbands and wives belting each other, and little kids beating puppets have tripled since the opening of the factory which has served as an economic boom. And something is also affecting the fishes in the nearby bay. Barracudas are attacking swimmers and snorklers and gobbling them up like fish sticks on Good Friday. These long-nose fishes are tearing up people and leaving nothing but the head. Turns out they really enjoy the meaty sensation of human butt. But the real reason for the strangeness in this burg of buffoons is even more insidious. Biologist Mike (Wayne Crawford) uncovers a plot to poison the water making the townsfolk hypoglycemic, unable to absorb nutrients, and eventually starve to death, a diabolical experiment in biological warfare. So when people's pee is dumped into the sea it's also poisoning the fishes and making barracuda rapacious for tasty ass. So Mike teams up with Sheriff Williams (William Kerwin) and his hot daughter (Roberta Leighton) to stop the total annihilation, peel the layers off this horrific conspiracy, and maybe grab a Filet-O-Fish or two.


Barracuda surfed the low tide tails of such killer fish tales of the late 70s such as Piranha and the great Jaws, and apparently it drowned because I’d never heard of this flick until it appeared in a random monster movie search. The film is packaged in the Double Drive-In DVD series which features a couple of Grindhouse-era movies complete with trailers and those awesome intermission/snack bar cartoons. In the past, this series has featured typical low-grade fare to bring back the missed low-grade excitement of the drive-in experience. And Barracuda is no exception. You’d think that the focus of the film would be the attacking barracuda and plenty of people munching, right? Well, you'd be wrong, Johnny Naïve. The movie meanders through a plodding main storyline involving pollution, corporate corruption, and medical ethics. Instead of a buffet of beachgoers, we get lots of talking scenes, characters reading pages from medical books, and big fat guys snoozing. I mean, there’s a time and a place for exposition and padding out your message, but hell I wanted more barracudas chewing up bikinis, hippies, and dumbass tubby deputies. So we are forsaken blood-soaked surf and get a weak (but sorta admirable) anti-government message plus a total bummer ending. I can’t recommend the film for a Bad Movie Night or an ironic trip down Grindhouse Lane as the movie has a TV movie feel and is way too slow. On the positive side, it does possess a cool synth soundtrack supplied by Klaus Schultze of the forthcoming Zombieland. Subtitled “The Lucifer Project”, Barracuda probably started out life as a conspiratorial thriller but ended up a killer fish nasty with little to no killer fish or nastiness.

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