This story has more twists and turns than a second-rate soap opera.
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Each character in this movie — down to the smallest one — is an individual rather than a type, prone to spontaneous changes of mood and sometimes amusing outbursts of pettiness or ill humor.
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Actress is magnificent and exudes a hypnotic screen presence in this affecting drama.
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With some of the dire, drab and boring horror movies which are getting good credit and reviews it was nice to jump in a time machine, thanks to terrestrial television (and the Horror Channel), and see how horror should be done.This was a breath of fresh air especially after watching The Babadook.Though there's a lot of action in the film and a smidgen of science fiction there's more elements of horror. There's an occult/religious angle, there's a demonic beast on the hunt for its next victim, which it dispatches in a very nasty way indeed, but most of all there's tension and suspense by the bucket-of-blood load.All of this is handled brilliantly under the experienced direction of Peter Hyams, he does a great job of keeping so many components from spilling over while keeping the story believable. Taking a story of this magnitude and getting the reader/viewer to believe it could actually happen is a skill. The first time they think this cannot be real then the writer and director have lost. So respect is also due to the writers and screenwriters for a very impressive job. If somebody want's to make a decent Stephen King adaptation then they should take notes from this movie.More respect for the creature creation wizard Stan Winston as this is some of his finest work in the horror genre... except of course "John Carpenter's The Thing". The scene where the beast catches a member of the S W A T team while he's running away and pulls his head off his body is awesome; this would have been spectacular to see on the big screen and one of the reasons I prefer wet-work over CGI in effects.Though there are no big name actors in the film they still give credible performances. The only one that partially hams it up is Chi Muoi Lo, who plays Dr Grant Lee, his character is meant to be annoying but Lo does tend to go over the top; luckily enough he's not in the movie much.This is an enjoyable horror film which romps away joyously in the action sequences and slows to a creepier pace in the suspenseful scenes. This film speaks to more than just horror movie fans and I would definitely recommend this to everyone to watch just once.
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This just might be the best monster movie I have ever seen, with a believable and action-packed story, good acting and thrilling special effects - thrilling because they bring something thrilling to life; the monster. I think the strength of the movie is in the casting of Penelope Ann Miller in the lead role. She is a terrific actress, who should have lots more screen time than she's received - and she's not your typical scream queen. She starts out as a very believable forensic anthropologist and her reactions when she sees the carnage the creature has left are totally believable. And the ending, where she employs her scientific prowess to fight to the last, is great.This is one well-conceived and believable story featuring themes such as rapid evolution and mixed DNA. Furthermore, Penelope Ann Miller is superb in the leading role. While the good stuff doesn't begin until about 40 minutes to the end, it sure gets good, with the suspension, action and terror rising. Of course, the main attraction of The Relic is the monster. Similar to Jaws, the actual monster is hidden for much of the film. There, however, the similarities end. When the wait is over, The Relic reveals itself to be an excellent beast, aesthetic and even beautiful. It's stupendously brought to life with excellent animation. The scenes with the monster wouldn't look out-of-date on the screen today.Overall rating: 8 out of 10.
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I saw this film the other night for the first time in years and I have to say that I think I enjoyed it then just as much as I did when I saw it all those years ago in '97 when it was first released.The Relic is a very enjoyable "creature feature" with quite a few good tense moments, the odd occasion of dark humour, and some very nice practical effects some of which still hold up even in this day and age. Is it an amazingly original film? No, but it definitely doesn't deserve some of the criticism that I've seen some people give it.Up until recently I never even knew that this was actually based on a book, but after reading some reviews in regards to the book, I'm actually a wee bit surprised at how different the movie seems to be from it, most notably the character of FBI Agent Pendergast. Now I'm not naive enough to not know that a lot of movies can - and often do - drift away from the books (Stanley Kubrick's version of The Shining being a great example), but it seemed strange to leave out such a big character. In saying that, I've not read the book so I can't really compare one over the other, but as I mentioned earlier, the film is still enjoyable in it's own right.The cast do a decent job for the main part, but the only thing I didn't really like was that Tom Sizemore was a bit over-the-top for some of his scenes. He was still good, but it was just those few moments that stopped him from being that bit better.If you've never seen this film before don't expect a huge array of creature CGI effects either - or a huge array of CGI effects, period. There are CGI moments, but the vast majority of effects you see in the film are practical, which isn't altogether a bad thing because how many films get released these days where it's nothing but CGI to compensate for an anorexic story line (Pacific Rim anyone?). Here, story precedes effects.If you've not seen it before then The Relic is definitely worth a watch.
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The Relic (1997): Dir: Peter Hyams / Cast: Penelope Ann Miller, Tom Sizemore, James Whitmore, Linda Hunt, Clayton Rohner: Brain dead horror film that becomes one of the biggest spectacles of the year. Apparently a relic is something dreadful from the past. If that is the case, then the description will serve for any comment regarding future references to this crap. Penelope Ann Miller plays the world's stupidest heroine who works in a museum where a crate arrives containing a reptilian statue. Bodies are discovered aboard a ship. Cops use police dogs for tracking but they run free. When found mangled a nitwit cop pursues the killer. An escape rapist is also gunned down as one of those phony bologna bull crap scares. Miller and James Whitmore managed to get lost in the museum. Children hide out at the museum. A cop has his head removed by this creature and the force sends more cops down. The stupidity in this travesty is endless. The only element of interest is the special effects because director Peter Hyams turns it into a laugh fest. He previously made such junk as Sudden Death and Timecop and hasn't improved much. Aside from Miller's whining, there is Tom Sizemore as a superstitious cop, plus Whitmore and Linda Hunt who fare no better. Clayton Rohner plays Sizemore's dimwitted detective partner. The result is an embarrassing monster flick that should be used as target practise. Score: 1 / 10