Backstroking with Dragons
Lake Placid
Review by Ross Anthony

Kind of a cuter, smaller version of the recent "Godzilla," "Lake Placid" is actually a slightly better movie. Where "Godzilla" makes the head hurt, "Placid" splashes up a bit fun. A solid "B" movie.

Basically, something big in a New England Lake bites a swimmer in half, so paleontologist (Bridge Fonda) flies in from New York to investigate. She teams up with a handsome ranger guy, small town sheriff, and hippie crock-doc who likes to backstroke with the dragons.

The dialogue between the four is throw-away sarcasm; still, a few beauts slither through. And honestly, the interaction between the sheriff and crock-doc is very amusing. It nearly takes over the movie and it should.

There's a scene where the fearless crock-doc jumps into the sea-monster's waters, finding himself face to jaws he advises the beast, "I know biting my head off right now might seem viable ... but it would cheapen you."

The mysterious reptile below the surface is the least implausible of the unlikelies in this picture, but if you're willing to swallow them whole, you might just have fun. Further, you'll get to see Betty White swearing like one of the South Park gang. Now that's a good time.

Starring Bill Pullman, Bridget Fonda, Oliver Platt.
Directed by Steve Miner. Written by David E. Kelley.
Produced by David E. Kelly and Michael Pressman at Phoenix/20th Century Fox.


Copyright © 1999 Ross Anthony, currently based in Los Angeles, has scripted and shot documentaries, music videos, and shorts in 35 countries across North America, Europe, Africa and Asia. For more reviews visit:

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Last Modified: Saturday, 16-Sep-2006 08:04:40 PDT