horror, movie, movie review, sci-fi

June 5th, 2017 Movie – Robocroc

robocroc

It’s time, once again, for my favorite game to play; “Parker Lewis Can’t Lose, Or Can He?” After the last disappointing movie, not so much a disappointing movie but that he had such a limited role in it, I am hoping for a much better showing today. So I honestly don’t recall when this was shown on Syfy, I am sure it did have a debut showing, but I obviously did not see it then. I wound up buying it with a bunch of other B-movies during an Amazon binge so I honestly had no idea if it was going to be good or not. Luckily, it did wind up being good but judge for yourself with today’s movie, Robocroc.

The plot: A top secret military project involving nanobots is shot into space for testing but the rocket malfunctions and the payload ends up being ejected before the rocket explodes. The payload lands in Adventure Cove, a combination water park/zoo, and infects Stella, a prized saltwater crocodile. Later that morning, Chef is feeding the various animals when he notices the trail of smoke heading towards the crocodile pen. When he gets there and calls out to Stella, she comes charging at him and he is forced to run as she smashes through the fence of her enclosure and Chef eventually hides in a storm drain. Later, Duffy, the head zookeeper shows up to work and is approached by the park’s owner Marshall and told about Stella and Chef being missing. As they head to Stella’s enclosure, they are joined by Jane, the zoo’s new biologist but when they get to the enclosure, they find it roped off by the military, led by Colonel Montgomery and a scientist named Riley. Riley refuses to let them into the enclosure, saying that they are searching for pieces of a wrecked plane, but when Duffy and Jane begin talking about Stella, Montgomery agrees to let them tranquilize Stella first before they go in. Duffy tranquilizes Stella and after he and Jane check on her, they tell the military they have one hour to find what they were looking for before she wakes up. Duffy and Jane start looking for Chef and find one of his shoes in some bushes and the other inside a drain pipe, indicating he is still alive. Jane then finds a patch of Stella’s skin and Duffy notices a metallic shine to it so Jane places it in a bag to examine later. Meanwhile, the recovery team find the capsule but inform Riley that the payload had ejected upon impact. Suddenly, Stella wakes up and, showing patches of metal underneath her skin, begins attacking the recovery team. Duffy tries to get some answers from Riley about what is going on but she ignores him and they learn that Stella has managed to get inside the lion enclosure. Meanwhile, Duffy’s son Rob and his friend Hud are at the waterpark and when Hud videotapes two girls, Sydney and Jules, the girls get mad and their boyfriends proceed to throw the two boys into one of the pools. Back at the zoo, Duffy spots Chef in the drain pipe inside the lion enclosure and he and Jane head inside the enclosure to rescue him. As they are trying to head back out of the enclosure, the lion starts to chase after them but Stella suddenly attacks it, allowing them to get away. After seeing Chef into an ambulance, Duffy tries to help Jane get over the shock of what has happened by showing her some of the scars he received in his job and telling her to always be careful around nature. Riley and Montgomery are trying to locate Stella but are having no luck and Duffy and Marshall explain that Stella can be anywhere due to all of the water in the park being interconnected. Back at the water park, Rob and Hud are trying to have some fun, though Hud is still mad about the two guys throwing them in the pool, when Sydney and Jules’ boyfriends see them and proceed to lock them in one of the restrooms. Stella continues to go through the various pipes, killing several people in the area before she makes her way into the water park, where she begins attacking the guests. When they receive word of her being in the park, Montgomery orders Marshall to shut down the park in order to keep her trapped in there and Marshall reluctantly does so. Meanwhile, Sydney and Jules had gone to look for their boyfriends and after finding them, the four kids leave the bathroom only to see the carnage that has occurred outside. They try to find some help but are find themselves trapped and unable to call for help. Back at the mobile HQ, Montgomery and Riley begin arguing over what to do about Stella, with Montgomery wanting to kill it but Riley refusing to allow Stella to be destroyed, as it is her life’s work. When Duffy demands to know what is going on, threatening to show the piece of skin to the press but Riley threatens to have them arrested if he does that. Montgomery then explains to Duffy and the others exactly what the nanobots were supposed to be capable of but they for this test, they were only given the most basic order; to survive. Back at the water park, Jules’ boyfriend is killed by Stella and as they panic over what happened, Sydney’s boyfriend says he knows who might be able to help and they head back to the bathroom to free Rob and Hud and asks for their help. Meanwhile, after Stella takes out a helicopter that was searching for her, Duffy offers to capture Stella alive and contacts Nigel Evans, one of the Australians that helped him capture Stella originally, and they head down into the lake with two divers to try and find her. Unknown to everyone else, Riley has managed to gain control of Stella and secretly programs her to attack the divers. Duffy and Nigel manage to escape and head back to the surface and Montgomery decides to electrify the lake, rendering Stella inoperable. Rob manages to get through to Duffy and tells him about being trapped in the park and Duffy and Jane go to get them out. Meanwhile, Stella comes back online and kills Marshall, then heads back to the park and kills Jules. Rob and the others manage to escape on ATV’s and head back to the water slide, which they climb to get out of Stella’s reach but Stella shows up and starts climbing after them. When Duffy, Jane, and Nigel reach the park, Nigel tries to distract Stella but ends up being killed when she does a death roll while he is on her back. Jules’ boyfriend is killed as the kids try to slide to safety but Rob, Sydney, and Hud manage to escape. Duffy tells them to head to the pump house and stay there but they head down into the sewers and try to get out of the park that way. Duffy and Jane meet back with Montgomery and Riley and head after Stella, who has made it to the town and manages to escape into the sewers. Duffy and Montgomery take an EMP device with them and head into the sewers after them. On the surface, Jane is keeping in touch with them when something interferes with their comms and she realizes that Riley is helping Stella but when she confronts her, Riley punches Jane in the throat and heads down into the sewers and Jane follows after she recovers. Duffy runs into the Rob and Sydney, who are helping Hud as he had fallen and twisted his ankle, and tells them to get somewhere safe, then keeps trying to get in touch with Montgomery, who encounters Stella and is seriously injured. When Stella returns to finish off Montgomery, he sacrifices himself by using a grenade to try and stop Stella. Riley confronts Duffy and tries to shoot him but Jane pushes her and knocks her down, right into the path of an oncoming Stella. Seeing Stella approaching, Duffy arms the EMP and places a recording of the music Chef plays for feeding time inside the briefcase and throws it towards Stella. Stella grabs the briefcase, as well as Riley’s hand, and drags them further into the sewer when the EMp goes off, killing Stella and Riley. Duffy and Jane head back to get the kids and they help Hud make it to the ladder so they can leave and Rob and Sydney end up kissing while Jane admits to being attracted to Duffy.

Once again, Parker Lewis can’t lose, bringing his record to 5-1-1. This was a pretty decent B sci-fi movie to watch. The acting was ok, with Corin Nemec (Duffy), Steven Hartley (Montgomery), and Dee Wallace (Riley) doing great jobs in their roles. The main story was pretty good with the nanobots merging with the crocodile to make a killing machine, and the government scientist refusing to stop the project no matter what happens. However, the little side story of Rob, Hud, and the other kids really didn’t make much sense except to serve as one minor segue to keep the plot moving some and the blossoming romance between Rob and Sydney just felt completely contrived. The special effects were pretty good for a low budget movie and I did like how Stella gradually became more metallic and robotic throughout the movie until it eventually became entirely robotic. So a fun movie to watch and shows Parker Lewis can still be the hero.

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5

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