When Black Water arrived almost a decade ago, I was completely entranced by the crocodile thriller.
With only Lake Placid as a comparison, I found the former to be a more serious take, and I really enjoyed it. So when I heard a long-gestating sequel was coming, I was actually pretty excited.
But even with the same director, Andrew Truacki, on board, everything just moves with a little less immediacy in Black Water: Abyss.
The plot is thin — about two couples and a guide who head into caves to explore and get stuck with a killer croc — but the effects are good. The crocodile is scary, though perhaps not as interesting in visual prowess as the one in Crawl.
There is definitely some wonderful tension and the tone is right, which helps a great deal. But the final 20 minutes really drop off, leaving us stuck with actors who neither distract from the action or add to it.
Black Water presents an adequate thrill-ride, but never really aspires to the B-movie greatness it could have enjoyed. It’s diverting, but never entirely exciting, and that’s the difficulty.
A crocodile picture should, at the very least, serve up break-neck gory fun, but this sequel to a truly enjoyable picture just doesn’t enliven the proceedings with enough intensity.