Hydra (2009)

Hydra (2009)

Prepare to be consumed.

Four millionaires pay a shady businessman to arrange them the ultimate hunt – live human prey. So four criminals are kidnapped, shipped out to a remote tropical island and given a 24-hour head start before the hunters set off in pursuit. What none of them reckon with is the multi-headed mythical monster, the Hydra, which lives on the island.

 

Jeez, that plot seems to be stretching it just a bit. It sounded believable enough until the completely random inclusion of the Hydra on the island. I mean come on Sci-Fi Channel, could you not just have had some giant lizard or dinosaur living there instead of a mythical monster? Or if you’re going to use something as mythical as the Hydra, then surely you can come up with something a little more relevant for it to be featured in. Anyhow, with this being the Sci-Fi Channel and this being one of it’s ‘creature features’ that it has been spewing out rapidly over the last few years, the Hydra is going to be as important as a pair of snow shoes in the Sahara desert by the time the credits roll.

As with the majority of the Sci-Fi Channel’s output, Hydra is mostly throwaway junk. The story is just awful as I’ve already commented on. It’s had potential on paper with the ‘hunting humans as prey’ story but absolutely nothing is made of it once it has been introduced. The actual hunt wasn’t even worth starting as the characters run around for a bit before the Hydra finishes everyone off pretty quickly. The characters are all terrible. The group of ‘convicts’ look like they have come straight out of college and it will need all of your imagination to buy them as cons. It would have been easier to have them as kidnapped freshmen instead of apparent cons. At least it would explain the goofy black guy and the unnecessary romance between the single male and the single female characters.

The hunters fare no better as each has a few lines of dialogue before they head off to the island. Just to distinguish them all, they dress in different ‘stereotypical hunter attire’ meaning one guy wears an English-style tweed jacket and flat cap, another wears camouflage, the redneck wears the cowboy hat and I can’t remember what the other guy was wearing but it was ‘hunter-esque.’ Even the characters on the ship are all one-dimensional goofs. The captain just chomps cigars all of the time but at least looks like he’s having fun with his role. His crew are all just random muscle men who are simply sent to the island to provide more fodder for the Hydra. At least Jana Williams provides some much needed glamour and sex appeal as the businessman’s wife. But alas this is Sci-Fi Channel material so the closest she gets to being naked is a quick bikini shot.

Let’s get to the actual Hydra shall we? Terrible is all that I can really say. CGI effects just don’t cut it when they are this shoddy. The monster grows two heads when it loses one but this only happens when people actually fight back. Most of the time, its victims just fall over unconvincingly and let it eat them. It gets very well fed during the film but that’s about all you see of it. It has the ability to sneak up on people almost without a sound too and doesn’t leave any tracks on the sand when it slithers across to devour a couple of boneheads shooting pistols at it. If you see a giant monster which clearly wants to eat you and you are armed with a small pistol, what would you do? Run away as fast as you can and use the pistol as a last resort or just stand there and fire aimlessly in the hope that your small bullet will hit a vital organ? I’m not a fast person but I’d be out there like a flash!

The monster just rips CGI people apart and there’s plenty of CGI gore but it all amounts to very little as it happens so often. I want to see slow deaths – getting eaten alive in these films is an instant death in most cases and the monsters chew people up too easily for my liking. On the positive side, this is one of the few Sci-Fi Channel films that I’ve seen that doesn’t fill up the cast with Eastern European hacks. Everyone speaks English perfectly which is a nice change!

 

Hydra actually had potential in my opinion but that was all frittered away within the opening few minutes! The mythological monster is one of the best out there and when treat right (see Jason and the Argonauts), it can actually look awesome. But the Hydra totally deserves better than this drivel. Slightly better than your usual Sci-Fi Channel guff but that’s not exactly a badge of honour.

 

 ★★★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ 

 

 

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