Basilisk: The Serpent King (Review)

Basilisk: The Serpent King

Directed by Stephen Furst

SciFi Channel churns out more original films than an original film churner-outer (Okay, I couldn’t think of a funny reference!) and many of them are just below average dreck that gave SciFi Channel a reputation of awfulness. But sometimes they aren’t bad and are actually fun. Thus, Basilisk: The Serpent King is one of those fun films, because otherwise I would be talking about how this isn’t a fun film and was terrible, now wouldn’t I? See, you are a smart audience, that is why I write for you! So Basilisk: The Serpent King manages to be entertaining, with a few good characters and some funny scenes. The best SciFi Channel monster films are the ones that don’t take themselves too seriously, have memorial actors, and have a plot that keeps the story moving but lets the monster do most of the killing. We got all of the winning elements here, so read on to see how it wins! Or I will turn you to stone or send Fawkes to peck out your eyes or something. Parselmouth!

Director Stephen Furst has also directed the SciFi Channel original Dragon Storm, but he is best known as Flounder from Animal House and Vir Cotto from Babylon 5.

Dr. Harrison “Harry” McColl (Jeremy London) – TS from Mallrats? You are here again? This time, Jeremy London is Dr. Harry McColl, famous archeologists who is lucky at digging stuff up in the desert, but unlucky as the stuff comes alive and kills people. He’s totally gonna get sued! See Jeremy London still looking like Brendan Fraser in The Terminators.
Rachel Donegal (Wendy Carter) – Professor of religious studies, which is in the archeology department because the school is small, I guess. Rachel Donegal is also the love interest, so good thing she’s single. Wendy Carter returned to the SciFi Channel-verse in Copperhead.
Colonel Douglas (Cleavant Derricks) – Rembrant from Sliders? Awesome! Colonel Douglas is the military officer called on the scene to deal with the Basilisk menace. Unlike most military officers, he usually listens to the scientists who know what is going on! That is why Cleavant Derricks rules. That, and Sliders.
Rudy Herman Skeeters (Griff Furst) – Harry’s grad student and right hand man. Rudy spends much of the film quipping jokes and doing research. Griff Furst is the son of the director.
Hannah Carmilina Turlini Frankman (Yancy Butler) – Hannah Carmilina Turlini Frankman’s full name is a total guess because I didn’t see it spelled out. She and her husband Brock fund McColl’s project because they are planning to steal the artifacts due to one of them being a map to a huge treasure. Yancy Butler is Witchblade, but I knew her from The Ex years before.
Brock (Doug Dearth) – Hannah’s husband and his name is totally not Biff. Don’t call him Biff. Even though he is stiff, as in turned to stone. Then he has a crack up as the Basilisk shatters him. Them’s the breaks!
The Basilisk (CGI) – The Serpent King here is more of a queen, what with being a gravid female. Turns people to stone with eye power and venom power, but also is turned to stone via eclipse power.

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Dragon Storm (Review)

Dragon Storm

Maxwell Caulfield as Silas (aka Huntsman)
Angel Boris as Medina
Woon Young Park as Ling
Richard Wharton as Remmegar
John Rhys-Davies as King Fastrad (aka King Gimli)
John Hansson as King Wednesbury
Directed by Stephen Furst

In space, no one can hear you….dragon? Yes, Space Dragons. Space Dragons that invade the Earth. Not modern day Earth, but Carpathia in 1190 AD (The Carpathian Mountain Range area I am guessing) where the dragons fight a clan of Medieval Stereotypes as well as a low budget. But for the cheap price of under $1 million, this flick managed to do very well. Most of the money seemed to go to the special effects instead of things like extras or costumes, so most of the film makes you think that Europe only had about 100 people in 1190. Dragon Storm was directed by Stephen Furst, if that name is familiar to you, you may remember him from Animal House, as he played Flounder, but no one shows up asking for 10,000 marbles. It’s admirable how Flounder took what was obviously a ridiculous idea destined to be another forgettable made for Sci-Fi Channel movie and turned it into an actual enjoyable Sci-Fi film that reaches near the top of the list based on the action/monster scenes alone. The main character is rather forgettable, the supporting actors outshine actor Maxwell Caulfield without breaking a sweat, despite his desperate attempt to become the Aragorn of Dragon Storm, instead becoming dragon fodder. Because we need some more explosions, Dragon Storm contains a token Asian Guy from China who comes equipped with this magic powder….that explodes…. Also he knows kung fu. Besides Playboy playmate Angel Boris, the film’s main headliner is John Rhys-Davies, of Lord of the Rings and Indy fame. Considering he’s also starred in Chupacabra: Dark Seas and is making the Uwe Boll film Dungeon Siege at this moment, someone needs to learn how to say “No” once in a while. Enough of the actor’s problems, we’ll deal with him in the review. Now, onward to Space Dragon invasion awesomeness!

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