Sasquatch Hunters (2005)

Sasquatch Hunters (2005)

Bigfoot… Sasquatch… Some legends never die… They Kill!

A group of scientists and forest rangers head into a remote forest somewhere in the Pacific Northwest after a previous trip uncovered some bones belonging to an abnormally large primate. Apes aren’t native to this part of the world so the team wants to find out what they belong too. What they don’t bet on is that the bones belong to a family of Sasquatch, still living in the area and unhappy that their burial ground has been disturbed.

 

Is Bigfoot the biggest straight-to-DVD horror craze that I’ve seen for a while? Forget killer shark flicks, Bigfoot is now the modern day king of the home video monsters. I can think of no less than four recent Bigfoot-themed horror films with surely more in the pipeline. The less said about his snow-bound relative, the Yeti, the better. What is the sudden craze in the big hairy monster when no one has even touched him for years? Why is Lance Henriksen in three of them? Why do two of them have exactly the same cover box? Why do most of them suck? Questions that this review will hopefully address…

Let me tell you first of all that this is the Bigfoot film which doesn’t star Lance Henriksen (he’s got his hands full with Sasquatch, Sasquatch Mountain and Abominable). I wouldn’t have been too surprised to see his weary face pop up for another brief cameo, simply to say that he’s got a monopoly on Bigfoot horror flicks. Even he has standards it seems, as low as they may be. Sasquatch Hunters may be the worst Bigfoot film ever made and that is a stretch given how boring Sasquatch was. It’s not that this film isn’t boring, quite the contrary, it’s got plenty of the hairy fellas running around the screen. It’s just that all this film sees to do is have characters walk around in the dark and let Bigfoot attack them. Instead of doing something like, maybe getting the hell out of there, they just slowly walk around the forest looking for one another. Needless to say Bigfoot has never had a lunch easier than this.

Pretty much the entire middle part of the film involves the characters splitting up in the forest and then being attacked. There is a small pre-title sequence in which a trio of rednecks is killed off by Bigfoot. Well, one of them survives and it looks like he’ll find his way to the expedition later in the film to warn them of their impending doom. But before he even reaches them, he’s killed off! Simple character filler to pad out the running time doesn’t come more evident.

Bigfoot comes to life like never before! Well that’s how the makers of this would have wanted to you to believe. A mixture of a man in a monkey suit and CGI, this must rank as one of the worst-looking monsters I’ve witnessed. For shots of the monster walking in the distance or approaching the camera, it’s a man in a suit. For any close-ups of the face or any attack scenes, the face has been enhanced with CGI to make it look scarier. There is one hilarious scene right at the end when the survivors make a dash for the jeep, only to be pursued by a whole horde of sasquatch. Imagine what the 100m dash would look like if the track was the woods and the runners were dressed in gorilla outfits. I nearly cried when I saw this. A hilarious moment of pure cheese and worthy of mention here. When I consider how mean the Bigfoot in Abominable looked, I can only wonder what this one would have looked like if they’d have put a bit more effort into the suit and ditched the CGI.

Director Fred Tepper has a long career with visual effects, having worked on projects like SeaQuest DSV and Titanic. Unfortunately it seems he’s forgotten anything he learned about effects when he made this. There is one decent moment with a woman using the flash on her camera to see where she is going in the dark, leading to the moment where she takes a photo of Bigfoot right in front of her. But moments like this are too few and far in between. For the rest of the time, the film is set to auto pilot.

 

I didn’t think things could get any worse for Bigfoot after Sasquatch but I was wrong and Sasquatch Hunters has proved that. Maybe this was a sub-genre that didn’t need creating after all. It’s no wonder that the legendary creature has proven to be elusive in real life (if it exists that is) if this is the sort of promotional work it’s receiving!

 

 ★★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ 

 

 

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