The Crater Lake Monster (1977)
Yesterday, I decided to pick up a great collection of low budget gold in the 12 Creature Feature box set. For me, this is a perfect set of movies that fit with the mindless entertainment binge I have been on when not watching Twin Peaks: The Return. The first movie from that set that graced my screen was the 1977 entry The Crater Lake Monster.
Plot/ A meteor that crashed into Oregon's Crater Lake unearths a dinosaur egg. The heat from the meteor causes the egg to hatch, and the emerging dinosaur takes to snacking on the locals.
Before I start this review, if you watch this and expect something phenomenal and/or Oscar caliber, it is time for you to turn away. That is not saying that this is terrible, but it is a no-budget creature feature from the 1970s and it definitely comes with the typical flaws that plague this type of schlockfest. There was a lot to like with some tremendous stop-motion animation considering the budget and the era. Plus the decision to use a Plesiosaurus was awesome considering the connection to some of the Loch Ness Theories that exist. Yes, the performances the film feels dated, were uneven, the lake is definitely not the real Crater Lake, and the storyline is all over the place and incoherent at times, but that just adds to the classic drive-in campiness that came with this eras low budget creature features. In the end, this is a movie that any fan of 1970s stop-motion animation will love. Sure, the schlock factor is high, but if you can suspend reality for a short period of time, you may get a kick out of this sci-fi creature feature.