I apologize for being late posting yesterday’s movie review. As it turns out, some friends decided that since my 40th birthday is coming up, they decided to take me out on the lake and have me go FlyBoarding yesterday. I will admit, I had a blast doing it, though I did face plant into the water several times. Anyways, it has been a long time since I have watched one of the “Maneater” series of movies for this blog so let’s get right into today’s movie, Rise Of The Gargoyles.
The plot: In Paris, France, two construction workers are working underground on demolishing an old church and discover an ancient buried catacomb hidden behind a wall. As they explore the catacomb, thinking they can find something valuable inside, they find an iron grate covering an opening and pull off the grate to check inside only for a gargoyle to awaken and kill them both. The next day, Professor Jack Randall is teaching a class on gargoyles in the use of gothic architecture when his friend/agent Carol Beckham tells him that the draft for his book has been turned down. After speaking about his divorce, Carol tries cheering Jack by telling him about something interesting that was found underneath Saint Jean Andre Church. The two sneak onto the grounds and head down into the hidden chambers and begin exploring, As they separate to look around, Carol finds some strange oblong stones and places them in her purse. Meanwhile, Jack is taking video and pictures of everything when he hears something pounding against a wooden door and when he tries using the video camera to see what it is, he sees something charging at the door. Jack grabs Carol and they leave the catacombs but later, as they are at a cafe talking about everything inside there, Jack says he wants to go back during the day. Suddenly, they hear a car alarm going off and find that Jack’s car has been destroyed and as he approaches it, a body suddenly drops from the sky and lands on the car. Inspector Gibert questions them about what happened but they have no answers and tell the same thing to Nicole Ricard, a news reporter for a somewhat disreputable newspaper. That night, Carol is in her apartment when the power suddenly goes out and as she is stumbling in the dark, she is attacked by a gargoyle. Carol manages to escape onto the roof and tries to call for help but the gargoyle flies up behind her and decapitates her. The next day, Jack can’t reach Carol and decides to head over to her apartment, where he discovers the wreckage from the gargoyle attack and Carol’s body. At the police station, Gilbert questions Jack and tells him he is a suspect, not just in Carol’s murder and the man that fell on his car, but for several other similar murders that have occurred recently. Returning to his hotel, Jack gets drunk and the next day, he looks through the pictures of the church and notices a gargoyle that was on the side of the church in pamphlets for it, but not in the pictures he took the night before. Going to the church, he sees a priest, Father Gable, arguing with the workers who are tearing it down but the priest is angry and refuses to talk to Jack. Returning to his hotel room, Jack sees a news story from Nicole’s station and gives her a call, asking to meet with her in order to discuss Carol’s murder. As he is leaving, he is stopped by Gilbert, who takes Jack to breakfast and tells him another girl was murdered close to his hotel. As Gilbert suggests a motive for Jack killing Carol, as it was her pushing that lead to him writing a controversial book that ruined his career, Jack gets angry and leaves. Jack heads to the station to speak with Nicole and her cameraman, Walsh, and tries to explain his theory about what killed Carol and hands them his busted camera, suggesting they try to repair it and see if he has proof of his claim that a real life gargoyle exists and killed Carol and the others. When Jack leaves, Walsh thinks he is crazy but Nicole says they should see if he did see something and tells Walsh to work on the camera while she heads over to Carol’s apartment to see if she can find anything herself. As Nicole is looking around, she discovers the strange rocks that Carol had taken from the church only to discover that it glows in the dark but when she holds it to the sunlight to get a better look, it stops glowing. Nicole heads back to the station, where Walsh excitedly tells her that he restored the video and it shows the gargoyle hiding beneath the church. They try getting in touch with Jack but when they can’t Nicole decides to head to his hotel. Meanwhile, Jack, having gotten Walsh’s message, shows up at the studio just as Nicole calls as she is being attacked by the gargoyle. Nicole realizes it is after the stone, which is actually and egg, and rolls it out from under the car she is hiding under and the gargoyle grabs it and flies off just as Jack and Walsh arrive. Jack and Nicole try to explain what they saw to Gilbert but he doesn’t believe them so Jack says they have to stop the creature themselves. Meanwhile, Gilbert has the evidence from Carol’s apartment brought to him and finds another egg in one of the bags and takes it with him as he leaves. Jack, Nicole, and Walsh head to the catacomb under the church and find Father Gable there with a dead body. Gable had planned on using the body as bait to lure the gargoyle back to the catacomb and tells them that it has always been underneath the church. Elsewhere, Gilbert arrives at the scene of where the pizza boy was killed and looks around, finally discovering the body. As he pulls out the egg and notices it glowing, the gargoyle grabs him and kills him. Jack, Nicole, Walsh, and Gable make a plan for finding and killing the gargoyle when the gargoyle appears again and goes after, trying to grab the eggs she is carrying. When they see it go back into the church, Jack, Walsh, and Gable head inside, with Jack convincing Nicole to stay in the van. Jack look inside to try and locate the creature and realize that it has gone back to the catacomb and make their way down there. Meanwhile, Nicole sees Gable grabbing several sets of explosives and realizes he plans on blowing up the creature, along with Jack and Walsh, and she heads out to follow him. As they all end up in the catacombs, Nicole finds Jack and warns him about Gable just as the gargoyle appears but Gable begins shooting at it and lures it away from them. Jack and Nicole find Walsh and they try to find their way out but the end up discovering the gargoyle’s nest, filled with more eggs.. Jack and Nicole explore the nest while they send Walsh to look for Gable but he finds no sign of him. Walsh rejoins Jack and Nicole and they use a powerful UV strobe light to begin smashing the eggs. When the gargoyle shows up, they manage to get away and head back into the church but the gargoyle attacks them, injuring Gable. They manage to use the strobe light to stop the gargoyle temporarily and Gable reveals he has the last egg, then tells Jack and the others to leave as he lures the gargoyle towards him and blows himself and the gargoyle up. As Jack, Nicole, and Walsh recover from the blast, Jack says that this would make for great material in a book, while Walsh reveals he has the tape of the gargoyle, saving his and Nicole’s career at the station.
To be honest, this was a decent movie, but a little disappointing on the whole. The acting was good, with Eric Balfour (Jack), Caroline Neron (Nicole), and Justin Salinger (Walsh) doing a good job in their roles. The story was ok but I honestly expected a bit more depth to it. I felt like they could have done more with the history of the gargoyle and the ancient church believing it to be a sign of Satan. I also didn’t really like the very end of the movie, not because the three lived through it all, but because it just kind of ends with “Oh, I’m going to write a new book.” “We are going to be famous.” The special effects were pretty good and a bit on the gory side, which honestly wasn’t really necessary for the movie. Not the best entry in the series but an enjoyable bit of time killing entertainment.
Rating: 2 1/2 out of 5