Year of Release: 2009
Genre: Sci-Fi / Horror
IMDB Rating: 2.8 / 10
Level of Awful: High
WHAT IT’S ABOUT:
Well, if nothing else, Sharktopus now makes a little more sense to me. With the discovery of this home video by Mega Shark and Giant Octopus, Sharktopus’ parents, it makes sense that the amazing hybrid hunter was such an angry and aggressive creature and it’s upbringing couldn’t have been easy. The affair that resulted in Sharktopus’ birth was evidently a brief and tumultuous one where there was a lot more fighting that lovin’ with the two one-time lovers being pitted against one another in a battle to the death. Let’s investigate this difficult time in order to better understand the psyche of our beloved Sharktopus.
It all started nearly 2 years ago as the next ice age was approaching: two ancient monsters, a mega shark and a giant octopus, were locked in a deadly battle to the very end. In the midst of this great battle the ice age happened instantly, freezing the ocean and the creatures solid. Flash forward to the present day and our intrepid heroine Emma MacNeil is busy piloting a submarine off the Alaskan coast and observing a pod of whales who are busy migrating. From out of nowhere a helicopter flies in and drops a device into the ocean that starts letting off very strong ultrasonic waves, disturbing the whales’ communication with one another and causing them to go off course. As a result the whales start bashing into the nearby ice shelf, cracking the ice and causing pieces to start falling into the sea. Of course, as bad luck would have it, this is the ice shelf that Sharktopus’ feuding parents are trapped in and, as the whales continue to smash into it, Mega Shark and Giant Octopus are released from their 2 million year tomb and both swim away to begin their reign of terror while Emma, not sure of what she just saw, tries to make it back to the surface safely.
The first sign that something is wrong in the world’s oceans comes when a whale is found beached with enormous wounds across its body. Not wanting to believe that something living could have done this the US navy quickly declares that the whale (which is remarkably hairy) must have been trapped in a net and hurt itself. The whale also has nothing to do with the Japanese oil rig that was attacked by some mysterious sea creature that the Japanese government is trying to cover up. Emma, of course, doesn’t believe this and, with the help of her old college professor Lamar and Japanese scientist Seiji, sets out to discover the truth about what is stalking the oceans. Emma steals a piece of something from the corpse of the whale and takes it to Lamar’s home so that they can try to figure out where it came from. After many hours, many viles full of luminescent liquid and a complicated and detailed looking computer analysis the home PC at their disposal spits up the word ‘tooth’. From here they simply have to go to any old book on the shelf to discover that it’s the tooth of a Megalodon, a now extinct species of giant shark. When tapes from the submarine mysteriously land up at the house they quickly realise that a giant octopus is also loose in the ocean and surmise that the two were once bitter enemies that were trapped in ice until the migrating whales set them free.
As is often the case with good scientists in a bad movie, as soon as they make their discovery they are arrested by the government and co-opted into trying to catch the creatures before they manage to attack anyone else. The plan? Pheromones. Attract them into natural bays where there’s no way for them to escape and try and capture them. That obviously doesn’t work because if it did we wouldn’t have the ‘VS’ part of our movie title. Plan B is to use the pheromones again but this time draw them to one another and let them finish the battle they started 2 million years ago. The use of the pheromones, of course, is based on the very scientific observation that, after 2 million years locked in ice, the creatures will be very horny. Tricked into believing that they’re gonna get lucky and armed with a natural predatory instinct the two sea monsters (who are capable of changing their size from shot to shot) are brought together for one final, sexually charged showdown to prove which one of them is the ultimate ruler of the waves.
Based on the natural enemies status of his parents, it’s really no wonder that Sharktopus is such an angry creature. Based on his lineage he is, in theory, his own natural enemy. It is my humble opinion that this ingrained self-hatred led him to go on the rampage that he did. Nevertheless the love, power and horrible CGI effects of his parents will forever live on through him.
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED:
- Whales don’t swim. Their visuals just loop back constantly.
- Giant sharks can jump over 10 000 feet into the air and catch planes.
- Sex leads to amazing scientific discoveries.
- pheromones have a luminescent green colour.
- Tropical sea creatures are perfectly at home in the Arctic Circle.
- Missions are always a success when the officials in charge of them have no clue what happened.
- Japanese people in Japan speak to each other in English with an American accent.
- Any old Irishman can just walk onto a US Navy submarine.
MEGA SHARK VS GIANT OCTOPUS TRAILER
Year of Release: 2010
Genre: Sci-Fi / Horror
IMDB Rating: 3.8 / 10
Level of Awful: Medium
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
It doesn’t get much cheesier than a SyFy creature-feature produced by Roger Corman, which is exactly why I was drawn to this one 🙂 Admittedly it is more of a sci-fi movie than a horror one, but when you have the opportunity to watch a half-shark, half-octopus creature swimming around and eating its way through Mexicans you really can’t pass up an opportunity like that. This is a perfect example of a b-movie because it’s not the acting (Julia Roberts must be so proud of her brother for being in this) that makes it bad but rather the complete absurdity of the monster the characters are faced with and the microscopic budget the effects must have been made on. I enjoyed a good few giggles staring at the screen while this played while constantly muttering ‘no, no way’ to myself.
The military’s up to its old tricks again: not content with nuclear weapons, missiles or allowing Justin Bieber to go platinum they’ve decided that they need something better, something that can take out pirates (aargh matie!). So what better plan than to genetically combine a shark and an octopus? It can have the shark’s teeth and ferociousness with the octopus’ tentacles and intelligence. Of course if you’re working in a corporation like Blue Water and need to prove that the billions of dollars used to fund this little f**k you to nature was worthwhile you need to take the creature, codename S11, for a test run. And what better way to test a creature with an antenna lightly strapped onto its head that allows you to control its movements (the only thing, in fact, that stops it from escaping) than making it chase after a small boat with rapidly spinning propeller blades? As is usually the case when idiots are testing mutant man-eaters the propeller blades cut through the strap and dislodge the antenna, making it impossible to control S11, who now gladly swims away while the people back at mission control sit and vaguely ponder what should be done next.
Now you obviously can’t just let the escaped sharktopus run around the ocean on its own little mission down along the Mexican coastline so Blue Water needs to find someone with a knowledge of the waters to help them bring it back to the lab. Enter Andy Flynn, a one-time disgruntled employee of Blue Water until he asked Nathan Sands, the boss, for a raise. Thinking that asking for a pay increase is an insult Nathan fired Andy, who has been living happily in Mexico drinking tequila and swimming in the pool. Joining him and his $300 000 pay cheque on this little mission are Nicole, Nathan’s daughter, and his best friend Santos. The plan: to dive underwater, tranquilise the sharktopus, bring it to the surface and launch darts into its head that will allow Nicole to interface with its brain again and command it to stop eating everyone.
There are several problems with this search and recovery mission, however. For a start this thing is really fast and can quickly grab a snack in the shallows by throwing its tentacles onto the beach to grab someone. If that doesn’t prove to be effective the sharktopus can also walk on land (water? fish? anyone?) and chase after people that way. Its skin appears to act like a forcefield and repels bullets or anything else you shoot at it and, perhaps the saddest of all, nobody in Mexico takes you seriously when you tell them a half-shark, half-octopus is coming their way to eat them, so civilian casualties are rather high. Add to this the fact that Nicole’s daddy went behind her back and altered the sharktopus’ brain to make it a killer rather than just a hunter (meaning that it kills at random rather than just for food) and you’ve got an enormous list of odds stacked against you. It’s now up to Andy, armed with a machine gun and against ever wearing a shirt, and Nicole, sweet and brilliant, to save the day and take down the sharktopus before more people get eaten and before daddy gets really mad.
THINGS I’VE LEARNED:
- There really are fish in the ocean.
- Sharktopodes speak whale.
- Sharktopodes shoot ink despite having no squid in them.
- Mexican women don’t own clothes, just bikinis.
- A woman’s breasts will not get up and dance.
- The military does not need to get any form of permission from government to fund really weird genetic experiments.
- Chum should be used as a last resort when hunting a giant man-eating sea creature; try diving after it first.
- You should shoot giant man-eating sea creatures after they’ve eaten your friend, not as an attempt to save him.