After a violent incident with a special chemical, a research scientist is turned into a swamp plant monster.After a violent incident with a special chemical, a research scientist is turned into a swamp plant monster.After a violent incident with a special chemical, a research scientist is turned into a swamp plant monster.
The film contains no surprises until one hour and eleven minutes into its hour-and-a-half run time. If you can't tell, I was counting.
Even if you've never heard of the DC character of the same name, you can see every twist and turn coming straight from the opening scenes. A good man and a good woman are working on a top secret formula in a lab in the Louisiana bayou. A bad guy - basically a third rate Bond villain - shows up with an army led by the always dependable David Hess and set about trying to steal the formula. In the process, the good guy is dosed with it and becomes the titular Swamp Thing.
I think the problem with this movie is that Wes Craven made it to prove he could direct an action movie. He proves that he was a remarkably average action director. Sure, it's a "monster movie", but the Swamp Thing is also a good guy; you're not supposed to be scared of him, and there is no attempt to make him such.
The only time the movie shows you anything interesting or surprising is in the final 20 minutes, where Craven is finally allowed to inject some horror into the proceedings. This is where the director obviously felt at home; it's the only time I was able to concentrate on the movie.
In its final act "Swamp Thing" turns into an "Island of Doctor Moreau" type of story, and it's only there that it becomes effective.
But after an hour and eleven minutes of pure tedium and mediocrity, you might have nodded off and will miss it.
- Nov 18, 2017