Atomic Croc

Crocodile deserves some credit for joining the small legion of Jaws-sploitation films without actually copying Jaws’ story – at least until the final act. There are no government officials or landowners worried about lost revenue, just two husbands seeking to avenge their family’s deaths.

For much of its runtime, Crocodile is unexpectedly competent compared to the countless Italian rip-offs of the era. Miniature scenery on its own looks wonderful, detailed, and clear. The full size crocodile head prop appears fantastic, certainly more so than the obvious live alligator playing the role elsewhere.

Crocodile is unexpectedly competent compared to the countless Italian rip-offs of the era

However, if there’s ever a film decimated by editing, Crocodile is it. Unknowingly predicting a later Jaws film (Jaws: The Revenge), the climax is so disjointed, even figuring out who lives or dies is difficult, this between identical footage of the croc’s tail slamming into the water, repeated no less than five times.

This monster, supposedly irradiated by nuclear testing (or at least according to the English dub, the only available audio), grows to gargantuan size, even if that size is disputed by the camera shot-to-shot. It’s a messy, imperfect film with splashes of messy, exploitative gore, if rarely any actual interaction between human and reptile.

Terribly cut as the action consistently is, the script finds its own eccentric way to depict men suffering through grief. Ludicrous describes many of their choices, but the emotional toll on these survivors is distinct in this genre that so often ignores the long-term hurt of such an event (or, in this case, an impossible event). That’s an authenticity Crocodile deserves notice for, if not so much for the title creature itself.

Video

With a remarkably clean master to work with, this Blu-ray looks fantastic considering the age and source. Print damage is near zero (stock footage aside), and the mild grain structure doesn’t challenge the encode. What’s left is sharp, natural imagery, well defined and crisp. Crocodile isn’t swimming (sorry) in texture, but finds what it can.

Generous black levels slip toward crush, while the contrast pops. Especially vibrant color enlivens flesh tones, while primaries balloon in richness. Flesh tones hold up, warm but not unnaturally orange. Crocodile looks ready for 4K somewhere down the line.

Audio

A messy English-dubbed DTS-HD track does what it can, but that isn’t much. Dialog becomes piercingly, uncomfortably loud, the score wobbles and fades on a whim, while everything else sounds distorted. Any bass sounds like crackling. It’s unpleasant, and the recommendation is to keep volume lower than usual to avoid these issues to a degree.

Extras

Lee Gambin provide the commentary, then Synapse tracks down director Won-se Lee that runs 31-minutes. Deleted scenes close this disc out.

Full disclosure: This Blu-ray was provided to us for review. This has not affected the editorial process. For information on how we handle review material, please visit our about us page to learn more.

Crocodile
  • Video
  • Audio
  • Extras
2

Movie

Slow and overlong as it is, Crocodile’s only goal is carnage and that’s what it provides.

Sending
User Review
3 (1 vote)

The following six screen shots serve as samples for our subscription-exclusive set of 35 full resolution, uncompressed HD screen shots grabbed directly from the Blu-ray:


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *