Superbeast (1972)

SUPERBEAST (1972)
Article 2230 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 4-24-2007
Posting Date: 9-20-2007
Directed by George Schenck
Featuring Antoinette Bower, Craig Littler, Harry Lauter

A female pathologist investigates the death of a strange, brutish man. Her investigation leads her to the Philippines, where she encounters a scientist engaged in strange experiments and a big game hunter with his own agenda.

The basic premise of this one holds some promise; it’s kind of an ISLAND OF LOST SOULS in reverse crossed with THE MOST DANGEROUS GAME . So why does this movie almost send the viewer into a coma? It’s not the acting; all of the actors seem quite competent to me. The location footage is also very watchable. No, the culprits here are the script, the direction, and the musical score. It’s one of those movies that tries to be mysterious but merely comes across as being annoyingly coy about plot points that become fairly obvious. Furthermore, the movie has a deadening pace; for every minute of action or conversation, there seems to be two minutes of people just walking around. The score is a very one note affair; it tries to be moody and evocative, but drones on and on without any change, even when the action requires it. As a result, we have a movie that manages to aggressively avoid being either atmospheric or suspenseful; in fact, it’s anti-suspenseful; I’d imagine it must be difficult to have a scene where two people go over a waterfall in a canoe that generates less suspense than watching paint dry. Only toward the end of the movie does the movie generate any life, and by then it is far too late. For insomniacs only.

 

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