I don’t know if you can quite say that Lake Placid is a horror-comedy. Mostly because the movie is just so damn funny and cool. They were perfectly aware they were making a movie about a giant crocodile in Maine, so they had a lot of fun with it. This is one of those movies that doesn’t take itself too seriously but on the other hand, offers excellent visuals. The practical effects were done by none other than Stan Winston of his Aliens fame. Add to this great production values and you’ve got yourself a winner.
So, it’s no wonder that Lake Placed is very highly ranked on our Chopped in Half: Best Crocodile Movies. I mean how could it not be with such a witty script and characters. Characters played by an excellent cast who knew just how far they can go with comedy and seriousness. On top of all of this, we have this sense of adventure in the air. A sense that something magical is happening.
I have to notice we’ve been talking about Lake Placid for quite a while now and we haven’t even mentioned the star of the movie, the freaking giant crocodile. It looks really menacing and realistic, something that becomes very apparent in the grand finale of this entertaining movie. Its sudden and quite brutal attacks successfully increase the tension and excitement of the atmosphere.
After a horrible attack of an unknown creature (unknown my ass) at a quiet and peaceful lake in Maine, a paleontologist is called to examine the tooth that remained after the attack. This particular paleontologist is quite neat and grossed out by bugs and other living things (not to mention sarcastic). She will team up with a rich and eccentric scientist and the local sheriff to find out what lurks beneath the murky water of Lake Placid.
With a runtime of just eighty minutes and pretty snappy pacing, Lake Placid will not only entertain you but also make you laugh. It’s one of those feel-good movies you can watch at any time. And the more times you watch, the more it’s going to grow on you. It’s poking fun at all the nineties big monster movies by following their formula to the letter. And it does feature some exciting action scenes that feel like they belong in a much bigger movie.
It’s more fun than Anaconda and Deep Blue Sea, two similar movies also featuring giant creatures. And it features a much better cast with Betty White stealing the show as Mrs. Delores Bickerman.
Director: Steve Miner
Writer: David E. Kelley
Cast: Bill Pullman, Bridget Fonda, Oliver Platt, Brendan Gleeson, Betty White, David Lewis
Fun Facts: Sheriff Keough’s gun also known as “Light Weight Forward Area Air Device Unit” is a 37MM flare launcher attachment for many military rifles.