Movie Review – Creature of Darkness (2009)

Horror is a genre that, when a film is done badly, can easily morph into comedy. Perhaps if I had watched Creature of Darkness (2009), directed by Mark Stouffer, with some buddies and a few judgment-impairing drinks it may have been funny, but viewing it alone and sober was nothing short of painful.

In it, we see a group of campers being slowly picked off by an alien known as The Catcher – and it makes me shudder to think just how wrong the direction of a masterpiece like Predator (1987) could have gone. Apparently, this cloaked and hooded creature has the ability to travel through time and across light-years in an advanced ship with the purpose of collecting human specimens for an intergalactic museum. However, its weapon technology is effectively limited to sticky spit and tripping tongues, some terrible CGI openings in the ground, and a hand-axe that it takes from the campers. There are some capable animatronics in the (overly used) close-ups of the monster, but the CGI is subpar even for the video-games of a decade ago.

The performances are confused and awkward (as I imagine the actors must have been and felt) and the long expositions are ridiculous, and I’m someone who has watched televangelists for laughs. The film is subpar even for SyFy originals. It would be one thing if this was all done intentionally for laughs, but there’s no reason to think this.

There are two 90s teen stars in the cast, being Matthew Lawrence and Devon Sawa, who many will remember from Final Destination (2000). As a bit of trivia, Sawa played this film’s director, Mark Stouffer, in the 1997 biopic Wild America, about the director’s childhood. Indeed, Stouffer is an award-winning nature film-maker. Unfortunately, that talent doesn’t cross genres here.

Grade: F

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