Let’s revisit our childhood.

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I remember enjoying the book The Relic and feeling a little underwhelmed with the film adaptation when I was 13, so let’s see how this sucker has aged.

Oh hey, Tom Sizemore is in this. Remember him? Yeah… I’m glad Hollywood stood against domestic violence in the pre-#metoo era. If you’ve wondered what happened to him, you’ll probably be saddened by how he fell from grace. Though, he certainly deserved the fall.

We don’t see a lot of big budget action/horror films anymore. The 90s have become an odd treasure trove of films designed to be fun and nothing else. There isn’t a major point in this film other than raw entertainment. While it does possess numerous flaws, I do wish there were more options like this at the theater. There is no franchise or extended lore to know. This is simply a self-contained show. Granted, it isn’t great.

So, where does it go wrong? The biggest mistake is the terrible lighting. I know I complain about the technical stuff a lot, but this movie is simply too dark to enjoy. Daylight shots are often darker than nighttime shots in other films. Interior shots are terrible and once things go dark (which happens fairly quick) forget about getting a clear look at anything.

The plot is easy to follow when watching, but I think summarizing it is going to make it seem more complex. A researcher sends some crap back to the Chicago museum from South America. Some sort of weird lizard God is in the cargo and traps a bunch of people inside the museum during a gala. This leaves our hero scientist and detective charged with saving everyone.

I guess it isn’t that complex.

What is weird about this film is that while it isn’t great it is exceptional in regards to expected genre tropes. Honestly, this could be used in a scriptwriting class to show how cookie cutter certain narratives could be. We have the stressed Dr. Green and the hard ass detective who have the completely unrealistic spark of attraction. We have stress in their lives. The museum can’t close because of an event. No ones listens to the warnings… blah blah blah.

If that sounds like Jaws, it’s because it is. If it sounds a bit like Aliens, it’s because it is.

SyFy has made an enterprise out of this sort of narrative. The problem is that they aren’t very good, but they remind you enough of better films to keep you from turning it off.

Sure, the lighting sucks, the dialogue is forced, people speak for each other oddly, the monster is lackluster, and the plot is preposterous. However, it isn’t the worst movie you could see. Honestly, it probably wouldn’t even make the worst ten for its year of release.

If you want a stupid movie where we get to watch obnoxious jackasses get murdered for being obnoxious jackasses, then this is your jam. Granted, you’ll have to put up with all the other obnoxious crap.

It was kind of fun for a nostalgia trip. I suppose I should reread the book.

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