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Some time ago, the show Creature Seekers was cancelled because
the last creature they were trying to track down, the legendary Muckman,
was pretty much revealed as a drunk actor in a monkeysuit live on the air.
But now host Asia Buchanan (Anju McIntyre) and producer Mickey O'Hara
(Steve Diasparra) want to give the show and in particular the
Muckman-subject another go - so Asia takes off to the backwoods with a
clueless skeletal crew (Danielle Donahue, Ian Piper, Jared Warren) to let
a local guide, Cletus (Ken Van Sant) and two hicks take them to where the
Muckman is believed to live. And soon enough, they have encounter after
encounter with the Muckman, who is seemingly able to appear out of and
disappear into nowhere, and is extremely good at appearing only in shaky
camera shots, so nobody can really tell what it is - which in theory makes
it all the more real or at least realistic, right?
Of course, the whole
thing is just a setup dreamed up by Asia, Mickey and Cletus, but they
figure if the crew isn't in on the hoax, that adds an extra layer of
authencity. Too bad then that their unconspicuous produc tion
assistant/driver/van owner Billie (Alison Whitney) is smarter and more
capable than the lot of them, and it doesn't take her long to not only
figure out the hoax but collect enough proof on video - until of course
she's found out by Asia, Mickey and Cletus, and while Mickey and Cletus
are quick to admit defeat, it's Asia, seeing her career in peril, who
convinces the others to kill Billie.
Cletus throws Billie off a bridge
to her death, but then he sees her dragged off ... by the actual Muckman -
which is just as well I suppose. The Muckman though turns out to be an
intelligent, gentle creature who nurses Billie back to health, but only
lets her go after she promises him to remain silent about their encounter,
because above anything else, the Muckman wants to be left in peace.
arrives with the camera crew just after Cletus has told them that she is
dead, and seeing her alive, Cletus quickly gives away all of Asia's evil
plans by accident - but then Asia and Mickey arrive, manage to overcome
their adversaries, tie them up and want to bur the hut they're in to get
rid of unwanted witnesses ... when the Muckman does interfere, and he
chases them off before a tentacled monster crashes their escape vehicle
But how come, you may (or may not) ask, Billie was so adamant to
expose her employers' hoax?
Because she's the host of a show called Hoax
Busters, that's why.
Above all else, this film is fun!
an hommage to 1950's monster cinema and a spoof of today's crappy so
called reality shows alike and succeeds much better than most other films
of its ilk by telling a non-formulaic story, populating it with
interesting characters played by a capable ensemble cast (especially
Alison Whitney is a likeable enough lead, Ken Van Sant and Steve Diasparra
give fun character performances, but it's really Anju McIntyre's bitchy
wannabe-celebrity who owns every scene she's in, and hilariously so), and
keeping its humour above mere gross-out level at least most of the time.
And the wonderful old school effects (including the stop-motion tentacled
monster) don't hurt one bit either, naturally.
I've read somewhere this
the cheapest movie director/old school special effects wizard Brett Piper
has ever made - but it was certainly not his worst one by a longshot.