Blood Lake: Attack of the Killer Lampreys (Movie Review)

Last Updated on August 5, 2021

PLOT: Animal expert Michael (Jason Brooks) has been asked to move his family (Shannen Doherty, Yar Koosha and Ciara Hanna) to a small town in Michigan to help them try and figure out why their fish population is dropping. The cause of this problem is lampreys, small fish that resemble eels. This normally wouldn't be a problem, until it's discovered that these particular lampreys love jumping dams, ruining water supplies and feeding on human flesh!

REVIEW: Creature-schlock production company Asylum is hoping to have another smash hit on their hands after the bizarre success of Sharknado, but I'm not sure they've got it with Blood Lake (helpfully subtitled attack of the killer lampreys, in case the title was too ambiguous for you).

It's nice to see Shannen Doherty getting work, that's always a positive, I guess. The wonderful Christopher Lloyd shows up in a cameo as the town's crooked old mayor, and that's a nice treat as well- the man can practically do no wrong in my book (and to be fair, he's got the best death scene in the movie).

That's about all that's any real fun in Blood Lake. The intentionally bad formula just winds up falling flat and doesn't provide enough clever laughs or fun kills to really be enjoyable. You meet your characters, the fish get mean, the fish start killing, the people of the town begin figuring out offensive maneuvers, etc. Everything just felt like a series of skits just sewn together to fill out the film.

I feel like these creature features need a good solid something to really grab me when I watch them these days. It seems to me that the viewer could pretty much tune in at almost any random point in the film and you'd have no idea whether or not you're ten minutes in or if the film is almost over. It's all just a bunch of hokey kill scenes which range from chuckle worthy to just plain terrible. You know that the CGI lampreys are often bad looking (though it may have been intentional to pick such an obscure animal, since who the hell knows anything about lampreys), and that families are getting split up and constantly searching for the person who was lost.

I'm convinced that director James Cullen Bressack's got more in his tank than this. I reviewed one of his prior films, To Jennifer (one shot entirely on an Iphone) and really thought it was pretty clever. Somehow, this thing is even going to air on Animal Planet- yeah that's not even a typo..Animal Planet! I don't know if anyone is paying attention from their corporate HQ, but I'd be willing to bet that if they took a look at the effects used in this film they might regret this particular partnership. It's just brutal how bad the lampreys can look sometimes, it's pure, pure cheese. Sometimes it looks like someone just shot nightcrawler footage and dropped it over top of the real film.

I know I might seem like a hater, but trust me when I tell you I'm not. I loved the Piranha remake (and believe it or not, I actually enjoyed the oft-misaligned sequel). I also really enjoyed Lake Placid. This one just doesn't deliver on any truly enjoyable front. The characters are erratic in their behavior and most of the cast is wooden at best (even Doherty is bumbling here).

Ultimately, it's almost always the same thing with these sorts of movies. Does the idea of a ridiculous creature feature with killer fake/rubber/cgi lampreys climbing walls and through toilets interest you? Then by all means, check this out. If you're looking for anything other than disposable, lowbrow silliness, look elsewhere as this one doesn't have anything particularly clever, gory or fun enough to make it stand out.






Source: Arrow in the Head

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