Thursday, May 11, 2017

CHUPACABRA TERRITORY (2016)





Every so often a film pops up in my inbox that looks interesting and I tell them to go ahead and send me a screener. I don't do it as often as I did in the past, but, hey this one had Sarah Nicklin in it. Who was I to say no.
For those of you that don't know who Sarah Nicklin is, well first, shame on you and, second, there is a magnificent director named Richard Griffin who has given us excellent films like;
ATOMIC BRAIN INVASION
DISCO EXORCIST
BEYOND THE DUNWICH HORROR
Sarah was in all of these along with her then husband, Michael Reed. Both of them are in this one.
Let's run it down shall we?
First off, it's a found footage film. Get the groaning out of the way and get back here. I can't stand found footage movies. So, if I'm still here that's a great sign.
Anyway, it starts with a disclaimer from the government about the footage they found. Due to the Freedom of Information Act anyone can watch this.
That works for me.
Our foursome are Amber, Joe, Morgan and Dave. They have heard of a place that is where the chupacabra dwell and they are out to prove it. The first road to where they need to go is barricaded. The second one has a ranger guarding it and some shifty guy who the ranger refers to as a biologist.
Yeah, right, a biologist in fatigues with a weird looking tank strapped to his back.
I ain't buying it.
Anyway, these kooky kids manage to get around the ranger and deep into chupacabra territory. (Yeah, see what I did there? Funny, huh?)
So, they run into other campers, get drunk. The other campers wander off to get slaughtered while our gang keeps looking.
Sometimes, the thing you want to find should just be left alone.
Right?



Since it touts itself as a found footage film, I start looking for illogical things. There were a few camera angles that no one would have shot. Shots of the car driving down the road. Things like that. One time a character grabbed a camera and ran for it. I do not believe for an instance he would have done that, but what are you going to do?
That being said, I liked the movie. Sure, Sarah Nicklin's character, Amber, could have worn more convincing clothes. Most people don't camp in a mini skirt, but she has nice legs so I'm going to let that pass. It was clever to introduce the other campers so we got some nudity to help crank up the exploitation quotient of the movie. The blood and guts looked good and I was happy they showed the monsters.
So many of these don't show the monster and I think that's a mistake. The whole reason for being there is to see the monster not just hear some passable foley work.
There is lots of professional looking camera work instead of nothing but GoPro and shaky cam. Sure, I get what your going for with that, but you can't get a guy to hold the camera steady for some exposition shots?



So, in the end, while this has not won me over to the found footage form of film making I liked this a lot. It produces an eerie effect overall, the monsters work and there are questions that we never get an answer to. Maybe we could get a sequel? Chupacabra Territory: The Biologist. That would be cool. And Morgan was the coolest one of the bunch. Made me laugh out loud more than once.


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