Directed by Steve Lawson
Starring Julian Boote, Adam Collins, Helen Crevel and Steven Dolton
Out on UK DVD from 88 Films
When a scientist runs short of funding for his life-saving medical Bio – Printing research, he accepts an offer of investment from a shadowy military organisation. In return, he is forced to use his technology to create the ultimate battlefield weapon – a full size Tyrannosaurus Rex. After an horrific accident in which the dinosaur massacres his research team, the scientist shuts down the project. However his investors demand results and it can only be a matter of time before the deadly T-Rex is unleashed upon the world.
Back in 1993 one of my most vivid memories was visiting my local (independent) cinema, the Monaco in Rhiwbina, Cardiff to watch the majestic Jurassic Park. Although not my favourite Spielberg movie, take a bow ET, I was engrossed by the film from the opening shot to the last. I was swept up in the rush of dinosaur enthusiasm, learning about each and ever dinosaur and hunting for amber in the local emporiums. Although my dinosaur enthusiasm has waned over the years, my love of dinosaur films has certainly not.
This leads me to 2015’s Killer/Saurus, an ambitious film, a film with no shortness of ambition. Almost immediately I was struck how well the film looked. I watched this on a HD stream and the film looked clean, with sharp contrast and a good use of colour and composition. Looking at the cast and crew I can see that the director was also the cinematographer, no small feat. From the small number of independent B-movies I have reviewed this fact certainly stood out, so I immediately engaged with the movie from the start.
The score is ominous and works. It sounds big and cinematic, and is appropriate to the film. Sometimes I look at purchasing such scores and find it difficult to source, for example this soundtrack is nowhere to be found on places such as iTunes.
The script is perfunctory and simple, very perfunctory in fact. In a film like this, on a budget of this size, although claiming to be a ‘creature feature’ its very much ala a bottle episode of a well made TV show. You know the episodes, mid season, budget saving, 2 or 3 people in a room all shouting at each other. In this instance, the script has to work, otherwise the viewer is instantly bored and loses interest. In this instance I was very much bored. I’m not one to have see action every other scene, but a script has to keep me engaged, and this one didn’t. Lines such as “Never underestimate the power of instinct” and stolen from the ultimate creature feature, Jaws, “smile you sonofabitch!” don’t ring true and comes across as false and, indeed, lazy.
The budget, although small, has been used well. Notably one scene comes to mind where a character is decapitated and thrown across a room. So as to cut down on costs, the head has a gas mask on it, so no need to show gore or blood on it. Kind of ingenious if I’m honest.
In conclusion, with an above average look with cinematography and an engaging score I was initially engaged with Killer/Saurus, and thought I would enjoy it from beginning to end. Unfortunately it did not engage me for very long. The actual T-Rex of the movie is barely in it which is frustrating.