Octopus

January 28, 2012 7 Min Read

Review by: Fusion3600

Plot: What’s it about?

If you think The Bermuda Triangle is a strange and dangerous place, you’ve never heard the stories about The Devil’s Eye. This location in the open seas has been shrouded in mystery for some time, as twenty-seven ships have sailed through the waters there. The catch is this, none of those ships have been seen or heard from since, as if they were consumed by whatever force lurks within The Devil’s Eye. There is no scientific reason the ships have disappeared in the area, but legend holds that it was the work of a massive octopus, who destroys all ships that pass through the waters. Seems a little far fetched to most folks, including those who order a powerful nuclear submarine to venture through The Devil’s Eye in the midst of a vital mission. Those on board the submarine must transport a dangerous international terrorist back to United States shores, which won’t be an easy task on their nerves alone, let alone with the mystical waters on their travel plans. Will the submarine just coast through The Devil’s Eye and shoot down the legend, or will yet another ship be consumed by the waters within the area?

This another “animals attack” flick and while a lot of folks despise them, there must be a fanbase for them, as they keep getting released. This film runs along the same lines as other genre pictures, which means less focus on the storyline and more special effects. Thus, the storyline is weaker than it should be, but then again, did you expect depth from a movie titled Octopus? The acting is typical for direct to video cinema, so I wasn’t let down, as I knew what to expect. Perhaps some folks view this with unrealistic expectations, but I simply can’t understand how someone could expect a cinematic classic from this one. The main draw here lies within the title character, a massive octopus that wreaks havoc on the once calm seas. I liked the special effects, but they’re along the lines of cheese laden computer graphics, so gauge your expectations in correct fashion. Sure, they sometimes look pretty bad, but in the end, they add a lot of fun and camp to this flick. Though Octopus never lives up to the potential it shows at the start, I think it is still more worth a rental.

I have to admit, I am not on familiar terms with the creative forces involved here, though I do know a little about the director, John Eyres. I know his resume reads like a bad line of made for cable sci/fi flicks, but there is some fun to be had in there as well. We shouldn’t always expect classic cinema from films and since I like cheap sci/fi, I think Eyres is a decent enough director. He gives this film some more than solid visuals and atmosphere, which adds a lot to the entertainment level present. Other Eyres films include Monolith, Lucifer, Slow Burn (1989), Project Shadowchaser I-III, and The Conspiracy Of Fear. The cast here is less than stellar, but Carolyn Lowery (Candyman, Vicious Circles) shows some real sparks of potential at times. I think she has some terrific potential to be a star, so I hope to see her again soon. The cast also includes Jay Harrington (Anywhere But Here, Whatever It Takes), Ricco Ross (Wishmaster, Hackers), and David Beecroft (Creepshow 2, Shadowzone).

Video: How does it look?

Octopus is presented in a 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. The underwater shots look a little rough, but all the other visuals are in fine form and I was pleased with this transfer. The contrast reveals detail when it needs to, but never too much and that keeps the element of surprise intact, which is important in this film. The colors seem bright and up to task also, no bleeds or such and flesh tones come off in warm hues, no inconsistencies present there. There is some grain at times, but not enough to sour me on this transfer. All in all, a fine looking effort from the folks at Trimark.

Audio: How does it sound?

This disc includes a Dolby Digital 5.1 track, which provides an atmospheric experience, which is always good. Some cool surround use can be found within the submarine sequences and of course, when the action heats up the screen. The speakers won’t burst or short out from overuse, but this is an active mix than puts you right into the action. The music isn’t as immersive as I would like, but it still comes across well here. The dialogue is rich and even in this mix as well, no volume issues or other problems seem to surface. You can also enable subtitles in English, Spanish, and French, just in case you might need them.

Supplements: What are the extras?

This disc includes the film’s trailer and a twenty-five minute behind the scenes featurette, which focuses on the film’s special effects. This is not a simple fluff piece to be sure and fans of the film will be pleased, as well as anyone interested in how special effects are created.

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