I probably should dislike this flick a lot more than I actually did, and truth be told, I didn’t dislike it at all. I mean the elements for a crappy movie watching experience were all there with a silly storyline, acting that barely bordered above amateurish, an inexplicable absence of nudity and a pretty chintzy looking monster, but what can I tell you, though I didn’t find ‘Lockjaw: The Rise of the Kulev Serpent’ supremely entertaining, I wasn’t completely repelled by it either.
Our little monster movie opens some thirty or so years ago somewhere in the swamps of Louisiana – can you say Voodoo? Little Alan is sitting in his bedroom one night drawing little sketches while his Old Man is in the next room wailing on his mom and trying to get into little Alan’s room so he can kick his ass too. Asshole. Not being a fool like his mom, Alan bolts out the bedroom window and runs over to little Miss Becky’s house and now these crazy kids are out and about looking for an adventure. Apparently for little Alan his definition of adventure is breaking into the local voodoo dudes house and stealing his mystical artifacts. Now I have a little issue with the voodoo dude because he knows that somebody just stole like the most evil artifact ever and maybe he should run out of the house and chase whomever, but instead he chills, tells his little boy Nick to chill and allows the chips to fall where they may.
When little Alan gets back to his shack he starts drawing a big red eyed dragon, and we are quite happy he didn’t draw like a huge pair of tits or some other monstrosity, but after he finishes the picture, next thing you know, abusive Dad is sleeping with the fishes.
Now it’s time to meet some crazy youths who as youths do in movies like this are planning a getaway to some remote location where you get lousy cell phone reception to literally party their lives away. These youths consist of Kurt the asshole who is
planning the whole event, his girl and final girl material, good girl material Sam (Lauren Fain), Kurt’s number one buddy and fellow asshole Clayton (David Pullman) and Clayton’s girl and resident whore Ashley (Victoria Vodar). Also along for the ride for reasons I can’t begin to fathom is old family friend Kelly (Wes Brown). I mean there are two couples and this dude. What exactly is he supposed to while the other pairs are off screwing somewhere? I don’t even want to think about it. Meanwhile Alan (Louis Herthum) is all grown up and has married Miss Becky (Lisa Arnold) and the two still live in those backwoods swamps and have a simple but very happy and fulfilling life together. Until those crazy kids with their big SUV run over Miss Becky forcing a completely distraught Alan to grab that evil mystical staff and start drawing crazy pictures once again.
Well it’s on as the Kulev Serpent is killing youths like crazy. Well not like crazy because there’s only a few of these youths so they have to draw it out a bit. What the Kulev serpent doesn’t know is that the Voodoo dudes son Nick is all grown up too, looking just like renegade rapper DMX, and he has something for his ass. Good luck with that Bazooka up in your ass Kulev Serpent.
I would say that the majority of the budget for this film went to paying DMX to show up in it but I’ve seen four or five of these movies from Most Wanted Films and he’s been in every single one of them so I’m more inclined to believe that he owns a stake in the company. So considering I’ve never really seen many of the actors in this movie in much of anything, I’m going to guess the bulk of the budget went to the Kulev Serpent itself because as low budget monsters go, it wasn’t half bad. Sure it looked pretty damn fake on most occasions, but the effects dude did integrate the serpent into its surrounding environments reasonably well.
Another thing that ‘Lockjaw’ had working for it would be that it’s mercifully brief at around 80 minutes which is always appreciated. Nothing can upset a gullible film watcher more than watching a crappy movie that thinks its ‘Raging Bull’. Keep it short and keep it moving, which is exactly what director Amir Valinia does for this thing.
Now ‘Lockjaw’ is a bit silly as the narrative and the concepts that build up the narrative are pretty ridiculous, and when are these crazy kids going to stop running off to remote places so that they can screw when there’s plenty of places to drink and screw right here in the city where we also get dynamite cell phone reception? The young actors in this thing are earnest and full of vigor, but alas not very believable and as such this isn’t the scariest movie around though the older actors do sell their roles a little better than the kids manage to do.
I’m not trying to tell anyone out there that this is a good movie because it’s not. Not even close. But I have seen better funded movies which have entertained me way less than ‘Lockjaw: Rise of the Kulev Serpent’ has, which obviously isn’t a ringing endorsement by any means, but it is something.