Triassic Attack (2010)

Triassic Attack (2010)

The skeletons are out of the closet!

The dean of the local university wants to expand the campus but this means bulldozing through a swathe of local businesses including a Native American fossil museum. The disgruntled owner of the museum uses some mystical powers to bring to life the museum’s three dinosaur skeletons to life which proceed to wreak havoc on the small town.

 

You should know what to expect by now from a Sy Fy Original with a name like Triassic Attack. The random title generator seems to have gone into overdrive this time around, with a daft name that screams attention and sums the plot up in two words. Why bother with timely exposition when your title can do the job in a split second? (Thanks for setting the trend, Snakes on a Plane). I’ve seen this film dozens of times before, mainly thanks to Sy Fy, with slight alterations made between each one including the type of monster and occupation of the main characters. Is there any point in going into too much detail on this? I knew full well what I was getting myself in for when I sat down to watch.

Triassic Attack could quite easily be chopped up into a brief highlight reel and no one would notice the difference because there is that little to get excited about. You’ve got actors going through the motions in roles that they’ve most likely taken for a free holiday to Eastern Europe. You’ve got special effects guys making dinosaurs in their spare time between takes on more important projects. You’ve got a director who was actually over in Bulgaria filming Lake Placid 3 (in an acting role) for Sy Fy when they must have thought “hang on, let’s save some more money and have this guy direct our next dinosaur flick” and roped him in to taking the hot seat. Ferguson’s direction is as flat as his acting was. This is hardly a director’s film though, more like a cut-and-assemble job which has been rushed along the Sy Fy production line.

The fossil dinosaurs are certainly unique in the fact that the animators didn’t have to spend time in coming up with unrealistic textures and colours for the skin. However they virtually do the same thing as every other Sy Fy dinosaur movie has done including roaring (which is impossible given their lack of muscles and vocal chords!) which is a real shame as the novelty of skeletons coming to life could have been so much better utilised. The T-Rex skeleton swallows a frat boy at one point only to have him fall out of the bottom of its skull because it has no throat. It’s a funny moment as the script at least appreciated the fact that these were only skeletons but it’s one that is a few and far between. You’d have thought that by coming up with the idea for the film, the script would be more inventive in how it treat the skeletons. But that’s asking too much from Sy Fy. They had the same script as they usually do, swapped the monsters around and then forgot to tailor it to the new monster’s needs.

Do I need to comment on the acting? It’s awful across the board, with two Scottish leads (Steven Brand and Kirsty Mitchell) doing their worst American accents and English actress Emilia Clarke as their teenage daughter fairs no better. Game of Thrones fans should take note of this early appearance of Miss Clarke about a year before she became famous as Daenerys Targaryen and began disrobing for the enjoyment of males the world over. Clarke shows none of the same feisty nature as she has on the show and judging by this performance, it’s amazing how she ever got her big break. Though I bet it’s not like she goes around trumpeting the merits of Triassic Attack and has probably slumped to the bottom of her (as it stands) very slim résumé.

I’m not sure that in 2010, we should still tolerate the daft idea of Native Americans having some sort of mystical powers which can do all sorts of weird and wonderful stuff when called upon in television and film. Horror films love the Native Americans and their spiritual and supernatural superstitions and yet again the token ‘medicine man’ character is here to both destroy and then eventually save the white man. I was quite expecting a few smoke signals or a war dance from him at some point. It’s beyond ridiculous but Triassic Attack isn’t the only recent horror film to fall guilty of that (Monsterwolf springs to mind, another Sy Fy flick).

 

Not to be outdone, Sy Fy would make the totally-unrelated Jurassic Attack a couple of years after this. With a whole host of prehistoric eras to go through, it’s only a matter of time before Devonian Attack or Cretaceous Attack go into production! Triassic Attack is just Sy Fy going through the usual creature feature motions…..again. Go and visit The Natural History Museum if you want to see dinosaur bones! They’ll be a lot more interesting to look at than this.

 

 ★★☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ 

 

 

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