Sgathaich: Snowbeast

So, the tales of Pumpkins and ghostly forces from the digital age has not chased you away, has it? Well let’s see what else I can find. Oh, how about a little calming tale of murder and monsters in the cold, in a way you might fight suspiciously familiar!

Snowbeast is a 1977 made for TV Horror/Monster film that can be easily described as a Jaws rip-off. No, it doesn’t involve a shark in the snow, that would be stupid. By Jaws rip-off I mean it follows almost the same story format and elements of Jaws. Instead of a beach resort town it’s a skiing resort town. But you still have an opening kill, it being covered up by a high ranking official to not damage holiday sales, this time being the old lady that runs the hotel. Eventually undeniable proof of the creature’s actions, a false kill putting the blame on something else followed by a group of the leads going out and killing the beast with at least one of them dying.

Though honestly Jaws was MUCH better paced than this. But then I’m not going into a Jaws rip-off made 2 years after but made for TV on obviously a much cheaper budget expecting anything good.

So anyway, instead of the shark it’s a sasquatch/bigfoot though coloured more like what people think of as a Yeti given the white fur… not that you see it. The kills are mostly done from the monster’s perspective fading to red so you don’t see the gruesome scene (or more likely to save on the effects). Maybe you see the beast arm as it bats something away but other than ONE scene that starts off the last third of the film you never see its head or body, and even then, it’s such a very short scene you never see it clearly.

As mentioned with the pacing issues, you have long sequences of people skiing or later hunting the beast on snowmobiles (it sounds much better than it really was, they never face it on them, or really chase, it’s just looking about on them before returning to their camper) what was act 1 and 2 of Jaws is meshed together so the false animal kill happens after the official is forced to admit to the creature attack and the finale lasts only the last few minutes as opposed to about a third of the film.

Still, it’s a cheaply done killer bigfoot movie that joy can be found in a bad movie night with friends or listening to a riffed version, maybe you can spot all the Jaws elements stolen. Plus, Sharks are a threatened species that all those crappy shark movies with bad CGI just perpetuate them as merciless killers who threaten man and those need to stop so I’ll gladly take this over those.

Rating: spear spear

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