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Sunday, April 15, 2012

Day 106: The Lost Tribe

The Lost Tribe
 If only they had stayed lost

I'm on the road this weekend, visiting New York City, and despite the lovely weather, I managed to cram in a horror movie to review. It's because I love you so much. That, and I'd hate to miss a day. Lucky for, I picked a movie that required about as much effort to watch as it did to make. I recall seeing the cover for this movie in various video stores and it looked interesting enough. Once again, I fall victim to judging a movie by it's cover.

The Lost Tribe tells the story of a few people who get shipwrecked after picking up an injured stranger and land on a small island in the Pacific Ocean. The surviving people bury the injured stranger, but his body mysteriously disappears. Searching on the island, they find a dog and evidence of an archaeological dig. One by one, the people are picked off by unseen assailants. It is revealed that the archaeologists on the island discovered the missing link between primates and humans. The Vatican had silenced the archaeologists because they didn't want the evolutionary find to become known and presumably hurt the Church. It is also revealed that the missing links are still alive on the island and have been killing everyone. Will the last surviving person, Anna, be able to get off the island or will the lost tribe claim another victim in the name of evolution?

No, please kill me first so I don't have to keep watching!

The basic story for this movie is pretty far-fetched, but not necessarily terrible. It's the execution that's terrible. I can get behind the idea of some sort of unknown tribe of people living in a remote area and hell, I can even get behind some sort of massive Vatican conspiracy. That sounds like it could be a fun movie. Not this movie, of course. Going beyond the brain freeze this movie gives me as someone who studied anthropology, the conspiracy aspect is never fully explored and not given enough time. More time is spent on the lost tribe (rightly so) grunting a Klingon-like language and jumping from tree to tree (wrongly so). They pretty much look like the Uruk-Hai from Lord of the Rings. with a little simian DNA thrown in. Who knew that thousands of years of uninterrupted evolution would look like a creature from a popular movie that came out a few years before this one?

Another thing that greatly annoyed me was a ripoff of the Predator-vision used to show the creature's point of view. They couldn't even use they heat signature vision from Predator, just some black and white negative picture. It looked like a promo from the now back in the WCW days of wrestling. I know they wanted to be creative, but they couldn't think of something else? Animals are able to see at least some colors, but these evolved creatures could only see low-definition black and white? There's an attempt at some character development, but it's really not important to the story. I probably couldn't name three characters in this movie. I do know that Lance Henriksen (Pumpkinhead, Millenium) was briefly in this, but I can't really figure out why. The acting is passable at best and the shots are shaky and dizzying during action scenes.

I see your tummy!

Lost Tribe might have sounded like a good first draft for a low-rent horror movie, but it never moved beyond the original notes scribbled onto a bar napkin. There are plenty of plot holes and mediocre acting doesn't help me forget how silly the story comes off. The Vatican conspiracy is only window dressing for the movie, which is unfortunate because it could have actually been interesting. The creatures are unoriginal and their grunting language is very annoying to listen to. There is a good chunk of the movie where no words are said, just the lost tribe talking without any subtitles. This isn't the worst movie I've ever seen, but that doesn't make it a good movie. Don't waste your time.


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