Bridget Moynahan is the new stepmother to Peter Weller’s children. 14-year-old Carly Schroeder is not at all pleased with the state of affairs, and just as displeased to be hauled off to Africa for a safari while Weller works on a dam. When their guide goes off-road, they run afoul of a pride of lions. The guide is eaten, the car is disabled, and the lions are circling. Weller mounts a hunt for his missing family, hiring a misanthropic big-game hunter to help.
There are more than a few echoes of Jaws here. If Grizzly advertised itself as “Jaws with Claws,” is this “Jaws with Paws”? Most of the elements are there, if we replace the slowly sinking Orca in the ocean with the disabled vehicle in the savannah, and the hunter is in full-on Quint mode. The finale is pretty familiar, too. So nothing much new, right down to the predictable family dynamics, but it’s all pretty entertaining, and the eating scenes are nicely gruesome.
The environmental effects are excellent, with fine front-to-rear movement and great left-right separation. The placement is superb, leading to such nice touches as a fly that buzzes from one speaker to the next. The sounds of tearing meat are suitably disturbing. The score sounds fine, though it is primarily in the province of the rear speakers.
There is a little bit of edge enhancement visible when characters are silhouetted against the sky, but otherwise, the transfer is top-notch. The image is sharp, the colours and blacks are terrific, and the contrasts are strong. What grain there is, is absolutely minimal. A nice-looking film, with plenty of pretty landscapes to act as settings for the grue.
A few trailers, and nothing else.
Been there, done that, but at least this is professional in its execution.