Maneater (or: GARY BUSEY vs TIGER)

Being broadcast on Sky3 and the Sci Fi Channel, a movie called Maneater could only ever be about one of four things (in order of likeliness) - a killer shark, alligator, bear or tiger. To its credit, Maneater goes for the least obvious of those four, and makes its central nasty a killer tiger. Still, such is the movie's locale and general tone, you'll keep forgetting that it's a tiger they're all so worried about. Even as I write this review, I keep describing it as a "killer bear" movie. To re-iterate, there are no killer bears in Maneater, although it'd make more sense for there to be one.

The sole reason I watched Maneater is because it stars Gary Busey and has him fighting a killer tiger. They should've called it Gary Busey vs a Tiger, because I'm sure they probably missed out on a larger audience by not advertising the Busey better. He's the sole reason to watch Maneater, since the tiger itself is fucking weak, y'all. It's is neither genetically modified nor particularly big. In fact, in one scene it looks bloody tiny. It's just your standard no-frills tiger, trapped in smalltown America. And yet it kills as many people as Jason Voorhees or Leatherface in their latest outings. Although to be fair, it's a dab hand at stealth kills and hiding corpses. Like Sam Fisher crossed with Jaws. Or Aliens. At one point, the tiger kills a whole military squad, offing them one by one. Maneater is basically a slasher movie with a tiger. And Gary Busey.

But not nearly enough Gary Busey. You'd hope that a movie which features GARY BUSEY vs KILLER TIGER would be 90 minutes of Busey wrestling with a tiger. Fuck scripts and CGI, just dope him up on cocaine and lock the man in a cage with your tiger. Tis gold, I tells thee. Sure, Busey gets plenty of screentime as Maneater's small town Sheriff, but most of the tiger-hunting duties go to a silly English white hunter type. It should be a comedy/horror, but Maneater really really isn't. In fact, I think the writers genuinely believe that all English people sit in tents drinking tea and growing curly moustaches. The white hunter character plays like a Monty Python sketch, except without a punchline. To be fair, it doesn't look like much work was put into the script at any point, so at least they're consistent. This is a movie in which missing person reports are filed by such evidence as "he left his favourite gun behind. He'd never leave that gun behind" or "he has to be missing. He'd rather die than be late". In addition to such idiotic writings, we're also treated to a weird child character who sees outlandish creatures where there are none. On the whole, Manhunter contains far too much bizarre, shoddy nonsense, but not nearly enough bizarre Busey nonsense.

To be precise, not enough of this:

1 comment:

  1. I love this review.. funny stuff. I thought the movie was hilarious though, mostly because of the poor special effects and Gary Busey.