Sixty feet of prehistoric terror!
When a distinguished paleontologist is killed while diving and trying to prove his theories about the Loch Ness Monster (played by Joan Rivers…just kidding!), his protégé Case Howell (Brian Wimmer, Tank Girl) shows up to lead a second expedition with a batch of wacky scientists (and other no name actors). To no one's surprise, Case and his team find the very real legend living beneath the water's tranquil surface. In typical movie monster fashion, people are killed, bombs are set off, and the monster comes out of hiding. To sweeten the pot the writers have included the character Richard Blay (Patrick Bergen, Sleeping with the Enemy), a grizzled Captain Ahab-like grump who is obsessed with finding the beast since he did his family wrong eons ago. Will Case be able to avoid becoming Nessie's lunch? Will Blay extract revenge on the creature? And do any of you really give a shit?
Beneath Loch Ness gives limburger cheese a run for its money. Here is a movie that doesn't know how to just shut the hell up. The film runs 96 minutes long, though I think the total amount of screen time given to the titular monster runs just under four minutes. The rest of the movie is filled with endless dialogue about the monster, what should be done about the monster, where the monster came from, etcetera—in other words, Beneath Loch Ness is a snooze fest to the highest degree. Not one single actor in this film seems to be even remotely interested in the story or its outcome. As the lead character Case Howell, Brian Wimmer has all the charisma of Emo Phillips on downers. Poor Patrick Bergen, once a promising star in such Hollywood fare as Sleeping with the Enemy and Patriot Games, flounders with his thick Irish accent and Braveheart-like painted face. As for the Loch Ness monster, I refer you to one of my earlier reviews of a film called Reptilian; they both seem to include the exact same effects, which include shoddily produced CGI that appears to be only 75% completed. If you really want to see a fun monster movie, check out Deep Blue Sea, Jaws or even the mildly entertaining Deep Rising. When all is said and done, Beneath Loch Ness is a film to be skipped. Some legends really are meant to stay buried—and Beneath Loch Ness is one of them.
Beneath Loch Ness is presented in a decent looking 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer. Sporting sharp colors and well saturated black levels, the image only suffers from a few minor flaws (edge enhancement and a few overly dark scenes). Otherwise, this isn't a bad looking picture for such a cruddy little flick. The audio is presented in Dolby Digital Surround and lacks the punch of a well mixed 5.1 soundtrack. Here's a hint for the filmmakers: if you're going to make a monster movie in 2002, make sure it has some well placed sound effects. The extra features on Beneath Loch Ness are thankfully kept to the bare minimum: included on this disc are some bonus trailers to other Dimension horror titles and a few spiffy scene selections!
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Scales of Justice
Studio: Dimension Films
• Bonus Trailers
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