Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Cyclone (1978)

Director: Rene Cardona Jr.

Writers: Rene Cardona Jr., Carlos Valdemar

Composer: Riz Ortolani

Starring: Arthur Kennedy, Carroll Baker, Lionel Stander, Andres Garcia, Hugo Stiglitz, Mario Almada, Olga Karlatos, Stefania D'Amario, Milton Rodriguez, Rene Cardona III, Rene Cardona

More info: IMDb

Tagline: The Violent Storm Was Only the Beginning ... The Sharks Would Be the Merciless End!

Plot: An airplane goes down in the ocean during a storm and a few survivors find refuge on a small tour boat. Swept out to sea, these people slowly starve to death in the hot sun with barely any food or clean water. With no place to turn, the boat survivors resort to cannibalism to stay alive...that is ..until the rescue planes come to pick them up and the man eating sharks decide its time to eat as well.

My rating: 6/10

Will I watch it again?  No.

I've heard this picture described many ways and only one was right.  It's a survival film.  There's little to no action, the storm happens within minutes and the rest of the two hour film is almost entirely spent with two separate groups of survivors, one group is in a small boat and the other are in the water with nothing but life jackets.  What you've got then is these people trying to stay alive despite little to no food and water and sharks.  I get why people don't like this film. There's not an awful lot going on.  The music is limited and you're in two similar locations watching people figure out how to stay alive.  All of this contributes to the dullness of the picture but it's not without merit.  Even though the pacing is slow, Cardona gives us a lot of situations for these people to deal with and they're nearly all things that you'd expect in a situation like this - water shortage, fighting, sharks, food, cannibalism, and so on.  And they react the way you'd expect as well.  The ending is pretty bleak which kicks the score up a notch.  It's not a bad film.  It almost would be if you saw a shitty fullscreen VHS copy but I watched a nice anamorphic widescreen print from Synapse.  Their DVD has a few extras like an alternate opening credits sequence, a trailer for this film, DANGER GIRLS, THE DEADLY SPAWN, THRILLER: THEY CALL HER ONE EYE, BIZARRE (AKA SECRETS OF SEX), OLGA'S GIRLS and GOD HAS A RAP SHEET. 

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