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Another New Crypto Creature Feature

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on April 22nd, 2007

Blog Critics Magazine has posted an online review of another upcoming crypto creature feature. This time the cryptid in question is the pterodactyl. At least a still living version of the pterodactyl.

The review also includes news of an upcoming Yeti flick as well…Oh, boy!

Pterodactyl DVD

The DVD is available on Amazon.com for the low, low price of only $9.98.

DVD Review: Pterodactyl

Pterodactyl opens with the single greatest gore sequence in the short history of Sci-Fi Channel originals, and the DVD confirms it was uncut. As one of the resurrected title creatures swoops down, it picks off a hunter right at the waist, leaving one half of his body on the ground, the other half in the creature’s claws. It’s unmatched, and right around (if not over) the decency line for standard cable.

That immediately makes Pterodactyl far more enjoyable than most low budget fare. Unlike the other junk spewed out by the network, this one never drops its pace. The few goofy, forgettable sub-plots are always present, but never the focal point of the action. It’s weird that the title is simply Pterodactyl considering there’s a full flock (pack?) of them, yet it doesn’t matter.

This film is simply too much fun to deny it credit. The special effects are way above the usual fare, and when the creatures are at a distance, you can see how stunning the work is for low budget made-for-cable schlock. The final sequences, along with numerous shots on the ground, do go horribly wrong and bring the viewer back down to cable TV/direct to video level. Still, considering how many there are (and how long they last), it’s not going to be perfect.

Outside of the dinosaurs, the horrible characters (including Kate, played by the adorable Amy Sloan) are just ridiculous. The nerdy guy, the spoiled rich chick, the stuck up girl, and the college professor who dragged them out to the site for a paleontological dig are simply too much. It’s also impossible to forget the special ops team fighting terrorists too, especially considering the team is led by Coolio who is stuck with some of the more cringe-worthy dialogue in years.

The gore continues as the cast is slowly dismantled (literally), though they do manage to get in a few shots. It’s a mystery as to why a special ops team would conveniently have a rocket launcher to perform its original task, but the weapon surely comes in handy, and it gives the special effects crew (Worldwide FX, the same group who did Mansquito, amongst others) something else to blow up into gory mush.

As the pterodactyls become extinct (again), their final moments are shamelessly stolen from Japanese classic Rodan. It’s likely because no one involved had ever seen it, they didn’t have a better idea, or because it was a slight homage. Either way, it puts a fun cap to an impossibly entertaining piece of schlock that you’ll never actually admit you enjoyed.

Video quality is sharp, clean, and clear as most of these low budget features turn out to be. The special effects are not helped by the added clarity as opposed to the static of a standard cable broadcast, though you can appreciate the detail on the creatures. Compression can be found in darker scenes, while shots during the day are flawless. Shots of heavy jungle backdrops have few aliasing issues, a fine achievement for the format.

Gunfire is active in the audio channels, consistently with shots ringing out in every speaker. There’s only minor movement as the birds sweep through the sound field, though there’s enough going on to end with a nicely immersive effort. Bass can pack a huge punch during explosions.

Extras include short filmographies, an even shorter photo gallery, and random trailers.

Director Mark Lester isn’t currently handling directorial duties of any films, though he’s producing a few. Lost Colony is a period piece involving a trio of wraith’s attacking a small village in the 1500s. The second is a Yeti creature feature. Both are due for release this year direct-to-cable, and likely the Sci-Fi channel will be the network.Matt Paprocki

Craig Woolheater – has written 2523 posts on this site.
Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster.


5 Responses to “Another New Crypto Creature Feature”

  1. heinselman responds:

    You have to hand it to the Sci-Fi Channel. Of all the media outlets available to mainstream viewers, this channel delivers those classic “B” movies and nature-run-amock.

    Pterodactyl aired originally several years back (2005) and shows up for re-runs every so often. While not a classic, it was one of the highest viewed films in the channel’s history. Yes, leaving room for a sequel even…..

    Oh, and for you hardcore folks. Some of the characters are named after real life writers: Prof. Michael Lovecraft, Kate Heinlein, Willis Bradbury and so on…..

    Craig Heinselman
    Peterborough, NH

  2. shumway10973 responds:

    I will admit, the critters looked pretty good, but coolio? Yes, it was definitely a B movie, I was even able to predict the end well before it happened. If you have nothing better to do and don’t want to get up from the couch for any reason, this is one of the better sci-fi channel movies to watch. Seeing how the Reign of the Gargoyles just…It Was Horrible! At least Pterodactyl has better animation than the UTube we saw the other day.

  3. monkeyz responds:

    I am a fan of these movies on Sci-Fi. I mean, I even bought Abominable on DVD. That movie is so completely ridiculous. Fun to watch.

  4. bill green responds:

    hey everyone i got a wonderful surprise this coming up Saturday at 9pm on sci-fi channel the long awaited sequel lake placid 2. I’m looking forward to watching it. thanks bill :)

  5. mystery_man responds:

    Lake Placid! One of my favorite crypto themed movies. Didn’t realize there was a sequel! As for this new movie, well, at least Coolio is still finding work.



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