BLACK WATER: ABYSS: 2 ½ STARS. “when-nature-attacks movie will not croc your world.”
The proliferation of creature features starring hybrid animals like the Piranhaconda, Sharktopus and Dinocroc have overshadowed the more traditional nature gone wild horror movie. “Black Water: Abyss,” a new angry, apex predator movie now on VOD, brings back the old school when animals attack genre and throws in some spelunking for good measure.
The action begins when a group of friends, Eric (Luke Mitchell), Jen (Jessica McNamee), Viktor (Benjamin Hoetjes) and Yolanda (Amali Golden), cast aside any fear of claustrophobia to descend into a partially submerged cave system in remote Northern Australia. They’ve been led there by Cash (Anthony J. Sharpe), who discovered the caves while on a search party for a Japanese couple who went missing in the area. What they don’t know is that the couple didn’t just disappear… they were eaten. When a tropical storm hits, flooding the caves, they are trapped with a herd of very hungry, very aggressive crocodiles
Cue the frenzied chomping.
Director Andrew Traucki has made something of a specialty of this genre, making giant shark movies like “The Reef” and “The Jungle” about a n Indonesian “forest demon.” He’s good with jump scares, the primal stuff like fear of the dark and claustrophobia and the mix of CGI and actual crocodile footage, but he’s let down here by a script that reduces his characters to sushi for hungry crocodiles and nothing more. It’s hard to create character arcs when the most interesting thing anyone says is, “We’re never going to get out of here, are we?”
“Black Water: Abyss” is a sequel to 2007’s “Abyss,” and while it has the occasional jolt and a breathless last few minutes, its lack of interesting characters will not croc your world.