Zombie Croc

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When a vengeful voodoo priest conjures an undead crocodile to terrorize the swamps, it’s up to a local cop to hunt the beast down and end its rampage.

I don’t really care to consider what a zombified crocodile would be like. They’re already eating machines anyway, adding zombieism to them seems a bit unnecessary. Can you imagine…oh wait, this is a voodoo zombie crocodile. Well damn, now I’m just kind of sad. Voodoo zombies are a depressing bunch on their best of days. I’ve talked about them before and how they aren’t really undead but we still consider them our brothers and sisters among the living regardless, that doesn’t mean we necessarily enjoy hanging around them though. Don’t get me wrong, we aren’t entirely without heart, even if said hearts are cold and dead, and it’s nothing against them, they are just so damn depressing. The brain damage they receive from a lack of oxygen, a result of being buried for far too long after ingesting a bokor’s potion, leaves them rather dull. I know it sounds really awful on my part, not wanting to hang out with a brother just because he’s as boring as watching an All My Children marathon, but you have to understand that they don’t care one way or the other. Hell, most times they barely even realize we’re there, but they are our kin and we respect them, we just don’t enjoy hanging around them because of how dismal it is when you realize they aren’t the people they used to be. With regular zombies like dear old me, what you are as a zombie is pretty much what you were as a person, just with the desire to consume human flesh and a few new annoyances, but with them, pretty much everything they were is gone. Like I said, it’s sad. Now imagine taking a creature like a crocodile, a creature that hasn’t had to change much in millions of years, a creature that is the pinnacle of reptilian superiority in modern times, a left over from the awesomeness that was the age of dinosaurs, and take everything away from it so all that’s left is a damaged brain that has to be told what to do. It’s depressing, like really depressing, like watching a tribute video in which Prince sings to David Bowie depressing. Now you see why I’m sad. If that last bit didn’t do it for you, I don’t know what will. Damn, now I need to go dig out some of my music, so let’s get on with this.

Our movie begins with a trip to the swamp, a trip that finds us watching as a voodoo priest uses his hoodoo to conjure up an undead crocodile. His conjured up friend begins to attack anyone that comes into the swamps, which is bad news for the nearby town, seeing as they’d like to pave the whole thing over and turn it into a mall. With no one able to enter the swamp and attacks spreading outward towards residents living just outside of the swamp, one cop, the daughter of the town sheriff, does her best to track and contain the beast. Unfortunately, her efforts seem all for naught as she finds herself constantly one step behind the vicious, zombified crocodile. Enter Crocodile Jack, a man not only capable of tracking and killing any species of croc, but someone who’s aware of this monster’s more supernatural qualities. As the bodies pile up, it’s up to Crocodile Jack to lead a hunting party into the swamp to stop the zombie croc, but the undead reptile’s controller, Papa Chicken, has his own ideas about that.

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{Yes, the voodoo priest is really called Papa Chicken}

I was going to make a complaint about how crocodiles aren’t native to America and maybe they should have gone with an alligator, but then I realized a few things. One, I’m wrong because a quick Google search brings up the American Crocodile which lives in Florida, and even though this movie doesn’t take place in Florida, my statement is still wrong. Two, Zombie Alligator just doesn’t have the same ring to it. Lastly, why the hell do I care so much about where crocs actually live when there is so much else wrong with this lesson in how not to make a film. Not a single person seems capable of acting, the dialogue was atrocious, and I’m guessing the story was written while someone was really, really drunk. Yes, this is another one of those flicks that plays the “so bad it’s good” card, a problem I see more and more where a film tries not to be great and fails, but tries to be terrible in the hope that people will be entertained by just how terrible it is. Grainy footage, purposefully bad dialogue that doesn’t seem to fit, and actors that do a horrible job because someone thought it would be funny are all staples of these types of flicks. The goal appears to be an attempt at capturing the nostalgia from those of us who grew up watching independent flicks that were awful, but that we enjoyed anyhow. What they forget is that these films weren’t made to be horrible, those filmmakers were trying to make good films with the equipment and techniques available to them at the time. It didn’t always work, and many times these movies turned out terrible. Yes, we enjoyed them both because finding independent horror twenty years ago wasn’t as easy as it is now, and sometimes we’d find a gem that was amazing despite not having a huge budget behind it. We didn’t set out to find terrible movies, we looked for great flicks in a sea of terrible ones in order to find actors, directors, and special effects artists we wanted to follow. I’m sure there were filmmakers even then just hoping to cash in a quick few bucks, but most were hoping to pave a road towards making more films with higher budgets. These people just making terrible movies for laughs don’t at all care about the art of filmmaking, and it definitely shows. The grainy footage and edited scratches are usually a good giveaway that what you’re going to watch is about to be terrible, not always mind you, but it’s generally a hint that someone is hoping to cash in on nostalgia. Cheaper cameras used to be terrible, they weren’t filmed that way on purpose, and while I understand the goal here, just because something is old or because it brings back pleasant feelings from years ago doesn’t mean it’s great. I remember what going to the dentist was like twenty years ago too, but I sure as hell wouldn’t want to go back through it.

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{Even the zombified reptile looks as if he doesn’t want to be here}

I could probably write paragraph after paragraph about how awful this flick is, but since “It’s Shit” would suffice, and because I don’t feel like having to write any more than is necessary about this garbage, I’ll keep this short and sweet. Seriously, the hour and forty five minute run time made me want to crawl into a deep dark hole, if just to escape the mind numbing stupidity of Zombie Croc, so I want to think about it as little as possible. The actors are the absolute worst I’ve seen outside of a school play tryout in ages, and they pretty much ruined any chance of enjoyment right from the beginning. It’s not all their fault though, at least I don’t think it’s all their fault because I don’t think any of them were actors. Understand, that’s entirely my opinion and based on nothing more than the fact that they were all too terrible to be people that wanted to act, more like friends of the director who agreed to lend a hand or possibly even just a group of patrons of the town bar who thought it’d be cool to be in a movie. Not that even good actors would have been able to save this disaster from the trash heap, not with lines like “It’s about what I heard, with my ears,” and “Yeah, I’ve had a few, who hasn’t.”   I understand they were going for hilariously bad dialogue, the problem is that it’s not hilariously bad, it’s just bad. If they had all just stopped talking, the movie might have been a tad more enjoyable, though not at all any more entertaining thanks to the slow, boring pace in which this thing plods along. It was so bad that I couldn’t tell if they were coming up with things as they filmed, or if anyone had the slightest clue where this movie was supposed to go. There are long stretches where nothing happens, and even when the action starts, it’s such a confusing mess that it’s difficult to tell what you’re watching. The shoddy camera work doesn’t help matters much either.

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{I only wish I’d have had more than a few before starting this thing}

If I had to leave a compliment, it would be that at least the effects were decent, they weren’t great, but they weren’t terrible either. The giant, undead croc reminded me a lot of the stop motion effects from older giant monster movies, and the gore, rare though it is, was slightly impressive for such a low budget flick. Unfortunately, when the only thing good about your film is that the effects weren’t terrible, it’s still a flick that isn’t worth watching. If you have nearly two hours of time to kill, and you hate yourself, then give this one a watch, otherwise there are way too many independent zombie films that are great for a person to waste their time with this one.

 

The Undead Review

 

Directed By: Robert Elkins (Flesh of the Living, Zombie Isle)

Starring: Brittney Scalf, Robert Elkins, Apyrl Crowell, and Crystal Howell

Release Year: 2016

Release Type: Straight to Video

MPAA Rating: Unrated

About The Undead Review

When I was alive I was an asshole and after I died remained pretty much the same, if not a little worse. You’d think becoming a member of the walking dead would mellow a person out, no more worrying about awkward small talk with people, no more having to be politically correct, and the entire world is your upright, bipedal buffet. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun as hell to be a zombie, just somewhat irritating at times, especially those times you have to watch a lame movie or read a lame book. Thankfully, when I am forced to watch these films or read those books, I’ve got places like The Undead Review to bitch and moan to my heart’s content. {When he’s not devouring the living or sinking his teeth into a good film The Undead Review (Andy Taylor) spends his time writing his own stories or hunting down the paranormal. Oh, and did we mention his blind dog once saved the world?)
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