April 23, 2023

Stay Out of THE LAKE

THE LAKE (Blu-ray)
2022 / 93 min
Review by Stinky the Destroyer😾

Thailand's The Lake features a couple of great-looking monsters. The producers must have been especially proud of them, too, because they show up on-screen early and often. Considering what looks like a fairly limited budget, both are more-or-less convincing, rendered through a combination of animatronics, puppetry and CGI. The same admiration, however, does not apply to the rest of the film.

The basic premise is okay, if pretty derivative, with two amphibious reptiles that emerge from a local river. The giant one is obviously the mother, stalking around like a T-Rex in search of the egg that was snatched away by a little girl. The smaller one is an adolescent that’s far more quick and agile, as demonstrated by a few killing sprees.

Not wabbit twacks.
But the execution is awful, both narratively and visually. The Lake is almost immediately bogged down by dull characters and unnecessary subplots, the worst being that of a dedicated cop dealing with his snotty teenage daughter. It’s also loaded with dumb dialogue (exacerbated by clumsily-translated subtitles) and glaring lapses in logic, such as a Jurassic Park-inspired scene where the roaring mother is stomping around just outside a vehicle, yet no one inside hears her. There are also way too many scenes of characters simply staring in dumbstruck awe at these creatures. 

Perhaps all that could be overlooked if the monster mayhem was compelling. But despite terrific looking creatures, most of the attacks either occur off-screen or are ruined by too much quick-cut editing. It also doesn’t help that a majority of these scenes occur at night during a murky torrential downpour. Worst of all, despite a narrative that builds expectations of a showdown in the middle of town, the film abruptly peters out into an annoyingly anticlimactic conclusion. 

Unoriginal and underwhelming, The Lake offers nothing that hasn’t been more skillfully executed in better films. 


BEHIND-THE-SCENES FEATURETTE - With a hilariously histrionic voice-over.



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