Bigfoot DVD review
Written and Directed by Bob Gray
2006, NTSC, 88 minutes, Not rated
DVD released on March 30, 2010
Todd Cox as Jack Sullivan
Liza Foster as Sandy Parker
Bob Gray as Bob Perkins
Brooke Beckwith as Charlie Sullivan
Jack Sullivan is a single parent relocating to Ohio with his daughter Charlie. His recently deceased father has left them a house and it is here that Jack will dust off the memories of his younger days. Upon arrival he is visited by his old friend Bob, now the sheriff of the sleepy community, and after a night of moderate drinking Jack sees Bigfoot in his driveway.
The next day Jack tells his friend what he saw, but Sheriff Bob dismisses the notion as illogical, especially in Ohio. Park ranger Sandy Parker informs Sheriff Bob of continued findings of mutilated wildlife and that she suspects a bear. A local at the bar blames Bigfoot, but his suggestion is laughed off by the other patrons, as he has made these accusations for decades.
The mutilated animals are soon joined by an elderly nature photographer and a young softball player. Delinquent rednecks form a search party/casual mob to search for the bear and events turn ugly. Terror begins to grip the community and soon only Jack, Sandy, and Sheriff Bob can save the day from the suburban Sasquatch.
Bigfoot is a low-budget flick that has a lot of heart and determination. The film scores points for the novel approach to making a monster by using a practical rubber suit instead of cheap CGI. The creature actually looks impressive, but is way too visible for the majority of its screen time allowing the viewer to see that the creature is really just a guy in a rubber suit.
Another rare find is a script that takes the time to develop the characters into likeable individuals. Todd Cox is a respectable lead who is convincing as a man who must ultimately fight Bigfoot. He takes the material seriously and has great chemistry with Liza Foster. Director Bob Gray appears quite comfortable in front of the camera as Sheriff Bob, thus completing a strong trio of performances that carry the film across some of the more dodgy elements of the script.
There are a lot of things going on in this movie, but suspense and terror are not among them. The overall tone of the feature is family-friendly, despite some brief moments of gore. The script caters more towards comedy than horror, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but the film needs to decide which genre to focus on.
Director Bob Gray brings an enthusiasm to this project that is sincere and good natured, as evidenced in the behind the scenes featurette. He seems determined to make a movie that belongs in the low-budget genre of the late 1980s and he succeeds. There is not a particular element that dates the picture, but rather an overall vibe that invites nostalgia.
While Bigfoot competently tells the story it intends, there is something off about the whole movie. Although Gray’s script is strong on character it lacks pacing and punch, but this may be a fault of his direction. The movie is entertaining while it plays, but is almost instantly forgettable after.
Video and Audio:
Troma delivers a fair picture that is full frame. While colors appear natural, the overall image appears a bit soft. The interlaced transfer brings some edge haloes and the deepest black levels appear murky.
Dolby Digital 2.0 is the only audio option provided for the feature, and while serviceable it would have been nice had the track been opened up to 5.1 surround. The dialogue is clear and never lost under the score, which is fortunate as there are no subtitles offered for clarification.
Director Bob Gray offers a friendly commentary that is largely anecdotal, but manages to convey some technical information on the production. His tales are laid back and comfortable, but there is the occasional slip into the dreaded “on-screen narration”.
Up next is a ten minute behind the scenes featurette simply titled The Making of Bigfoot. Interviews with the cast and crew are intercut with on-set footage from the production.
Rounding out the supplements are a stills gallery and trailers for Bigfoot and additional fine Troma titles.