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Dagon (2001)

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Plot Summary:
"Based on a short story by H.P. Lovecraft, the undisputed master of the macabre, Dagon tells the story of Paul Marsh, a young man who discovers that the truth will not set him free instead it condemns him to a waking nightmare of unrelenting horror. A boating accident off the coast of Spain sends Paul and his girlfriend Barbara to the decrepit fishing village of Imboca looking for help. As night falls, people start to disappear and things not quite human start to appear. Paul finds himself pursued by the entire town. Running for his life, he uncovers Imboca's dark secret: that they pray to Dagon, a monstrous god of the sea. And Dagon's unholy offspring are freakish half-human creatures on the loose in Imboca."

Review by
Ryan McDonald
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Review Date: 16 October 2003 My Rating: out of 5


Or, When Good Directors Go (Very) Bad. An attack by a shark forces a rather unlikeable yuppie couple to seek refuge at a nearby fishing village. Whilst the girl (Raquel Merono) runs off to get help, our leading man (Ezra Gordon- what the hell kinda name for a leading man is Ezra?) stays in town to find that basically everyone is a zombie and they worship a freaky pagan fish-God named Dagon.

That really is the plot, and sadly it's not as hysterically funny as it sounds, thanks to the surprisingly deadening pacing by Gordon, who directed this adaptation of a H.P. Lovecraft tale. The film has a fairly creepy atmosphere, but like John Carpenter's 'The Fog' it isn't enough, even moreso here than that film.

The extremely gory (and even weirder) finale is nearly enough to make it tolerable for gore-hounds, and oddly sexy mermaid-lady (Hey!) Macarena Gomez is rather enchanting (if mostly unable to act). However, the 70 minutes one has to endure before the finale is a chore.

It's just a lot of running around whilst supposed Spanish acting legend Francisco Rabal (as a town drunk who has escaped the zombies by staying inebriated) spouts wholly unintelligable lines of dialogue and our man Ezra carries on like an especially wimpy cross between Gordon regulars Bruce Campbell and Jeffrey Combs. Oh, if only he had their charm.

Perhaps it is time for Mr. Gordon to find inspiration elsewhere, but with another 'Re-Animator' film out there, I doubt it will happen. Weird, especially gory, but totally uninvolving.

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