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DVD Review

DVD cover

Savage (Region 1 Edition)


Starring: Martin Kove, Tony Becker, Lisa Wilcox and Shane Callahan
MTI Home Entertainment
RRP: $24.95
Certificate: Not Rated
Available 20 September 2011

A fire is raging through a section of Bear Valley National Park, but the mayor and the new sheriff are reluctant to close the park because, providing the wind doesn’t drastically change direction, the tourists will be safe. Besides, many of the holidaymakers are leaving of their own accord and demanding their money back. However, the blaze is driving the wildlife out of its natural habitat, making it easy for illicit poachers. A dominating man brings his wife to the area hoping to make money by shooting something; he has no idea that he will soon become the prey. A young scientist has paid a local hunter to accompany him in tracking down and studying the legend that is bigfoot, after years of attempting to prove its existence. When some bodies are discovered, the indication is a bear attack. The only one who knows for a fact what they are facing is the hunter, because he has seen it before...

The opening scene contains some of the worst acting I have ever seen. In the foreground of the shot the fire chief is exclaiming, “Oh!” and “Ah!”, bending over and mopping his brow unconvincingly with a soot-stained handkerchief. In the background, a line of fire fighters are using axes to dig a trench. They appear choreographed, all moving in unison like a dance, and hitting the same point at their feet with little force or effort. This doesn’t bode well for the film but, thankfully, it does improve. The characters are somewhat stereotypical: we have the town newcomer, who is the sheriff; there is the rugged, no-nonsense hunter; the naive but determined young scientist; and the weak female who learns to fend for herself.

I must say that all sightings of the beast are mere glimpses, with only one full-on face shot which I’m pleased to say doesn’t disappoint. The director even has enough sense not to linger on its features. I particularly enjoyed the chase sequence where you see the creature running sporadically on two legs and four. The interaction between the players is predictable but nevertheless engaging, although it’s inevitable in this film, as many other creature features, that practically the entire cast is cannon fodder, so to speak. The attacks are well-handled for the most part, edited in cutaways so that your mind fills in the gaps as per your requirements.

I couldn’t help feeling I was watching Jurassic Park, without the children and with the dinosaurs replaced by a big foot. So, aside from the points I’ve mentioned, and the annoying periodic warning message scrolling across the screen on my review copy, Savage proves an enjoyable 87 minutes of nonsense.


Ty Power

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