Reviewed by Kryten Syxx
Starring Gary Busey, Ian D. Clark and Ty Wood
Directed by Gary Yates
Distributed by Peace Arch Entertainment
Oh dear. Oh dear. It’s one thing if a movie has a low budget and totally blows it with an original idea, but when a movie lacks funds and completely rips off a classic film … that’s just fucking sad. Maneater is one such film that not only bores but it totally insults the audience who were tricked into thinking the cover art would match the movie.
Maneater’s plot goes like this: A small town is under attack by a predatory animal that is not indigenous to the area. When trying to plead his case, -- of course -- the town's sheriff is met with resistance from political figures and -- of course -- that leads to more unneeded deaths. Then, someone posts a reward for the critter which causes more deaths of foolhardy adventurers. A wise old hunter comes along to kill the beast, but at the end it’s the sheriff himself who blows the creature to bits thanks to a combustible tank.
Yes, this is in fact a budget version of Jaws where the shark has been replaced by a very small and tame looking tiger. Don’t let the cover fool you, this tiger isn’t menacing in the least. These sort of ‘animal-run-a-muck’ movies should not cause the viewer to go “awwwww” every time the beasty gets screen time. The filmmakers behind Maneater just didn’t understand that … and a number of other things as well.
Suspense is another list item that Maneater’s crew didn’t bother with. There’s no build up to a single kill. You’d think a creature that can somehow silently kill trained members of the U.S. Army (some of which are standing less than five feet from one another and never notice they are getting picked off) would instill fear in the most basic way, but no. Between the poor script and even poorer acting is sandwiched an experience to rival even the worst Sci-Fi Channel Original Feature. How can this be possible? I mean, Gary Busey is in this for God’s sake!
Even when all else fails in other films, Busey can usually cop a few laughs. In Maneater, however, Gary appears to be totally disinterested in what is going on. His reaction to people being eaten is about as vague as the Mona Lisa’s expression. Hell, you’d think that even the appearance of a tiger hunting Allen Quartermaine would at least raise an eyebrow…
Not only does this flick fail on every level but it also has an unbelievable number of ‘WTF’ moments. Not only are these crunchy-bits-of-stupid mind boggling, but some are educational! Let’s run down just some of the idiocies:
Bottom line -- If you’ve got an urge to watch Jaws, then rent Jaws. No clone could ever do that classic story justice.
That is all.
1 out of 5