10 October 2006 | Coventry
Sober & tense Bigfoot-adventure
. With lots of rednecks!
It's nice to see that "Creature from Black Lake" has quite a few loyal fans around this website. Nice because, even though it's not exactly a good film, it's undoubtedly a charming and spirited piece of 70's low budget film-making. The creators of this film UNOBTRUSIVELY cash in on the contemporary trend of Bigfoot-horror movies, and that's probably what makes it so likable. It's a sober and atmospheric film, practically shot in documentary-style, and it never wants to be overly spectacular or gross. Okay, maybe there weren't enough financial means to show a more impressive creature or to shoot virulent battle scenes, but then still you got to admire director Joy N. Houck Jr. for effectively using the impenetrably dark Louisiana swamplands and their population's restraint attitude. Two students from the university of Chicago head for a remote village in Louisiana to write their thesis about the legendary creature that supposedly dwells the swamps there. Long before they even come face to face with the monster, Pahoo & Rives have to deal with inhospitable rednecks that deny its existence. Just when they consider giving up, a giant ominous figure approaches their tent
I have a soft spot for horror stories that take place in quiet outback areas, but too often these films exaggerate in portraying the locals as perverted and totally brainless imbeciles. The people in "Creature from Black Lake" are genuine rednecks; still they don't come across like retarded stereotypes but more like members of an aloof community that wishes to protect what's theirs. The two leads are very amiable too, since they're common guys with an open spirit towards each other and towards the people they encounter, even when those aren't helpful to them. Equally praiseworthy is the feeling of constant menace lurking from behind the trees. You always expect the creature (or something else that is scary) to jump out from somewhere. This creepy effect is made even more intense with sober music and eerie natural sounds. A slightly higher number of casualties would have been welcome, but I sure ain't complaining. Recommended to fans of atmosphere-driven horror