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Monday, April 29, 2019

Swarm of the Snakehead (2006)

If you have spent any time reading my reviews here at the Horror Dude Blog, you will have discovered that I love bad movies. Swarm of the Snakehead isn’t a good movie, but is it entertainingly bad? That I guess is the question.

A father relocates his three girls to his hometown after a nasty divorce. After meeting up with some of the local characters they start to make friends. He connects with an old girlfriend and his oldest daughter starts to hang out with the mayor’s son. Things go sideways quickly when some killer mutant fish come crawling out of the water and start to eat everyone in sight. That is a real mood killer!

Along for the ride is Mayor Janice, who refuses to stop the fishing contest that the town needs to keep local business open. Even after she knows that something is out there killing people. If Jaws has taught us anything it is that you can’t trust the mayor in a situation like this. We also get the “celebrity” guest for the fishing contest, Darrel “the Manly Fisherman” Delhey. He quickly decides to capture one of the fish to make himself famous and inspired a new television show. You know it can’t end well for either of them.

There are a lot of things wrong with Swarm of the Snakehead. Many of the attempts at humor miss the mark and come off as dumb rather than funny. There are a few really funny jokes that I enjoyed but they are in the minority. We also get stretches of the movie where there aren’t any killer fish and no jokes are attempted. This I guess is supposed to be character development but comes off awkward and kills the pacing. There is also some terrible CGI (even for a low budget horror flick from the mid two thousands). This is especially noticeable when they have the large swarm on screen. It appears that they only had a couple of models so when they move about half of them have the same exact motion while the others are still. I wanted better than this.

I loved the practical work
I did enjoy it when they used puppets. Some of the extras are clearly holding them up to their necks during the “attack” sequences. To me that is part of the fun. Plus, the sculpt and work they did on the latex creatures looks really nice. Not sure how many that they made but there are scenes with at least ten of them. Using sound effects, they also manage to give some personality to them as they sort of laugh and react to the human actors. This is when the movie is at its best and I wish we would have had more of this.

I can’t recommend Swarm of the Snakehead to everyone. I had fun, but I was in the mood for something silly and dumb. You have to be a fan of bad movies to enjoy a flick like this.

© Copyright 2019 John Shatzer

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