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Maneater series: Rise of the Gargoyles (a movie review)

The second movie from the Maneater series I’ve chosen to watch is a nice little flick called Rise of the Gargoyles. There is no hidden meanings and no artsy-fartsy stuff like that, yes, the movie does indeed involve gargoyles! And many people just won’t like it, because, just because, it’s just your standard SyFy-like flick. But then, so what? Did you just say you don’t like bad movies? 🙂

Filmed in Romania (one wonders why, right?) and France, we follow Professor Jack Randall (Eric Balfour, who I have a really hard time to believe in this role, man, you’re not cut to play academics, sorry!) with his helpers (first, Carol Beckham, played by Tanya Clarke, who just couldn’t make it to the end of the movie) and then TV reporter Nicole Ricard (Caroline Néron, at least with some cleavage and a lack of interest, but hey, one has to earn their daily bread somehow), cameraman Walsh (Justin Salinger) and Father Gable (Nick Mancuso), the priest responsible for the church where the gargoyles was kept imprisoned, trying to stop – you’ve guessed it – the rise of the gargoyles, those mythological beasts who during the day turn to stone just to turn back to a beast during the night and feast on the human flesh (tasty!!!), whose gargoyle mother was unknowingly freed from it’s church prison by unsuspected workers. A few deaths later (among them an annoying French police inspector) and after the encounter with the feared monster, our heroes win. Like you’ve expected otherwise.

Eric Balfour as Prof. Randall
Our heroes in the old church. Néron, Balfour and Salinger.
Tanya Clarke as Carol Beckham

Anyway, if you are familiar with the Maneater series from RHI entertainment, you know what to expect, a low budget fun which no one should take too seriously. The storyline is nothing new, of course, and the lack of budget is felt especially during the scenes in catacombs (I mean, seriously, there is more light in the catacombs than during the night outside, but as my other half has noted, you wouldn’t see shit otherwise, but maybe just flashligt scenes would add to an atmosphere), and the biblical theme (just a hint of it) concerning the gargoyle as the Beast of the Apocalypse was absolutely unnecessary, but one can’t go wrong with a little biblical mystery thrown in the mix these days.

Finally, a gargoyle!
Caroline Néron

OK, it’s not a masterpiece, that we all can agree on, but I’ve certainly seen much much worse movies with ratings similar to these. The movie itself was not bad – obviously, the dialogues are sometimes just absolutely out of place (you know, how to became an expert on gargoyles in 5 or less minutes), you would try very hard to find any tension here, characters act like it’s not a big deal, Nicole’s decision to keep walking from the office after she heard strange noises (yes, guess who made them) just to be attacked by a gargoyle is just illogical (you should left those eggs where you’ve found them, girl!), but hey, with logical decisions we wouldn’t have many great movies!

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Rudolf Schütz

A father to two little perpetuum mobiles called kids, Rudolf is a main force behind The Rubber Axe webzine, a bookworm, musick lover and a movie fan - not to mention his virgin forays into the comics and board/card games.

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