Monday, June 20, 2005

Time Magazine on "Sea Monster" DVDs...

My all too apparent fixation on killer shark movies et al is tied to the fact that I love underwater monster movies. Which is weird, since there are extremely few good ones and a gigantic crapload of bad ones.

This fact is indicated by the DVDs featured in the article "6 Best Sea Monster DVDs Ever." (Time, June 27, 2005; Page 72.) Admittedly, the fact that they are talking films released to DVD narrows it a bit...but not much at all.

Unsurprisingly, their number 1 choice is...Jaws. I mean, what else? It's really the only surpassingly good sea monster movie ever made. After that, things fall quickly. While I'm more than willing to call the Jaws movies sea monster flicks, even I'm a little leary about so designating their number 2 choice, Creature from the Black Lagoon. Admittedly, we see a lot of the Creature underwater, but in a lagoon, first of all, so it's hardly a 'sea monster.'

Number 3 is John Huston's Moby Dick, which again is stretching things as it's not really a monster movie. However, my larger problem is that it's not a really good movie of any sort. Personally, I think the Patrick Stewart mini-series holds up a lot better.

Number 4 is Godzilla, and...yes and no. Godzilla does start out sinking boats and stuff, but his main actions take place on land. On the other hand, he's killed in the water...meh.

Number 5 is Tabu, a film by F. W. Murnau featuing a "possessive shark". OK. From what I can see, the shark isn't what the film's about. If you're going in that direction, I'd include 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea for the Squid attack.

Number 6 is The Abyss. Lame!!

But the really sad thing is that I can't think of much to put in the place of most of the above films. It Came From Beneath the Sea, maybe, just on the strength of Harryhausen's quintipus. That's about it.

Man, that's weak. There have been dozens and dozens and dozens of underwater monster movies, if you count all the killer sharks, octopi, etc. And almost every man jack of them sucks.


Postscript: Bonus points for this concluding sentence in the Time article, regarding The Abyss. "The sobering message: sometimes the monster on the ocean floor is man." Yeah, that's sobering, all right. (Rolls eyes.)


At 1:01 PM, Blogger thanoseid said...

Beast from 20,000 Fathoms was mostly on land. Ditto War of the Gargantuas and Gorgo. Leviathan and Deepstar Six don't count. Orca sucked. Tentacles sucked. Deep Blue Sea sucked... Was Deep Rising any good? Or Behemoth the Sea Monster?

At 3:52 PM, Anonymous Zev said...

I liked Deep Rising, but it was pretty much a B-movie. Still, the monster was great and everyone knows that's the real reason we watch these things.

At 6:58 AM, Blogger Ken Begg said...

Deep Rising was actually kind of good, and I guess maybe it is a Sea Monster movie, although most of the action takes place on the ship, so it's more like Alien. Still, it's a better call than some of Time's choices.

At 1:26 PM, Blogger Marty McKee said...


Oh, hell. DEEP RISING is a good movie though.


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