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THE LAST LOVECRAFT: RELIC OF CTHULHU
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Reviewed by: Zombie Boy

Directed by: Henry Saine

Starring:
Kyle Davis
Devin McGinn
Barak Hardley

Movie:  
star star star star
Extras:  
star star star star
Overall:  
star star star star
What's it about
A trio of friends, including the last scion of HP Lovecraft, must keep the Relic of Cthulhu out of sinister (webbed) hands lest the end of the human race come about by the hands of fish monsters from space.
Is it good movie?
Jeff Phillips (not a coincidental last name), a small-time dork working a dead-end job with his immature comic-collecting best friend, Charlie, finds out from an emissary from a mysterious council of old men that he is the last heir to the Lovecraft immunity to the telepathic powers of the Old Ones. Together with their other dork friend and proclaimed HPL expert, Paul, the trio must protect the Relic of Cthulhu, entrusted to them by the council, which could release the world-eater from his underwater prison.

The Last Lovecraft is a really unfortunate film. Right from the get-go the humor is forced, and the characters lack any real chemistry or charisma. Most people donít realize how tight the editing must be for comedy to work, and those people I would direct to this film as an example of the negative. But the editing is not the only culprit: the film is only 75-minutes long, but there are still long, tedious scenes where nothing happens. They had all the room in the world to shim in some character development, but never did. We are just supposed to believe these slackers suddenly want to save the world as soon as some old guy thrusts an ancient piece of wood into their hands.

There are cool monsters, though. Well, they would have been cool if they were shot well. No matter how finely crafted masks and monster suits are, and these were all well-crafted, they pretty much just look like masks and suits if you donít light them properly. They all looked weirdly dry, especially for sea creatures, and would have benefited from a healthy dose of slime. And the water thingÖsigh. A sea creature fighting in the desert conveniently falls down next to a pot of water, and dunks its hand into the water and is instantly revitalized. Sigh.

I know I sound pretty harsh, but honestly, that is because this movie could have been so much more. All the elements were there: a wealth of source material, cool monsters, witty banter. It just aggravated me that the movie shot itself in the foot on every count. I wanted to like the film, and should have liked the film, but it never become the monster battle I wanted to see, and just sort of plodded along to an anticlimactic conclusion.
Video / Audio
Video: Widescreen (2.35:1), and I think the director says something in the commentary of it being shot with a RED camera. Other than my issues with the lighting of the monsters, it all looks pretty good.

Audio Dolby Digital 5.1, with optional Spanish and English SDH subtitles. I had no issues with the sound design.
The Extras
Extended Scene: There is a classroom scene right after the title credits that sets up the emissary from the council, and in this longer version it also prefigures the Lovecraftian sea monsters we see later on.

Pencil Test This is a pencil test (basically an animatic) of the animated scene towards the beginning of the film that seeks to educate any of the audience ignorant to the works of HPL about how the universe of his fiction works. It also has commentary from director Henry Saine.

Behind The Scenes Still Gallery: I am a big fan of still galleries that are predominantly BTS, and this one does one better and is all BTS. It isnít a slideshow, though, which is a bummer. You have to push it forward with the remote.

Commentary director Henry Saine, star Kyle Davis, and writer/star Devin McGinn: This is a pretty good commentary. It starts off with a bang, with all three men immediately launching into stories about the production, from location-scouting to effects. A lot of the stories they tell detail how scenes written one way had to be rewritten last minute to accommodate production problems. They even managed to sound upbeat and amused when pointing out visible equipment in a shot. Iíll give them a lot of credit for that.
Last Call
As always, I softened up towards the movie after listening to the commentary, but I will let my review stand as it is: regardless of how awesome the cast and crew are, and what the intentions of the film were, the fact remains that it is just not very good. It has many great elements and ideas, but fails to execute them in any meaningful way. If youíre a hardcore HPL fan I would suggest watching this anyway, as it is definitely a love letter to you, despite its failings.
ARROW IN THE HEAD'S RATING SYSTEM
star star star star I'D BUTCHER MY FAMILY TO SEE THIS AGAIN
star star star HANG ME BUT I DUG IT A LOT
star star AN OK WAY TO KILL TWO HOURS
star JUST SLING AN ARROW IN MY HEAD AND LET ME DIE IN PEACE

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