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Home > ‘Bad CGI Gator’ (2023): A Review

‘Bad CGI Gator’ (2023): A Review

‘Bad CGI Gator’ (2023): A Review

It’s So Bad — It’s Good

Don’t expect any ounce of seriousness from Bad CGI Gator. As the film’s poster indicates, the entire movie is “terror rendered too cheaply” — a.k.a., ridiculous is exactly what they were going for. Producing a horror film is tricky because it can either be so awful or shockingly brilliant. But it’s the movies that know they’re awful, and they use this as entertainment. With characters deliberately poorly written and a plot that is literally a floating, technologically villainized Jaws wannabe, Bad GI Gator is not a heart-pounding film. In fact, it’s not even enjoyable, but the hour-long horror uses its self-aware plot and exaggeration to its advantage. 

A Simple Plot 

The first part of the storyline sounds like a copycat of countless other horror movies — six Gen-Z-aged college students and grads rent a cabin in the middle of the swamplands of Georgia, where they rebel against the American education system by chucking their laptops into a lake. This is where the second portion of the plot embraces its stupidity. 

Upon throwing the computers into the water, the lochness-like gator absorbs the electrical current from the laptops, and it becomes an unstoppable monster seeking the prey behind its creation. 

The plot alone is simply dumb, but even the title of the movie knows it. Who puts the word “bad” or even “CGI” into a name? Bad CGI Gator made sure to. Its general storyline is supported by the characters’ individual personalities. From social media influencers to brainless beef heads, it’s easy for viewers to chuckle when they hear how “major slay” it was for the characters to drown laptops. But the protagonists’ air-headed and naive personas would be nothing without the dedicated performances of the cast. 

Hyperbolized Performances

The main cast — Sarah Buchanon, Rebecca Stoughton, Maddie Lane, Ben VanderMey, Michael Bonini, and Cooper Drippe — all understood the assignment. As a few of them declare at the beginning, they know how to “slay,” like, “major slay,” that is. Even for viewers who are a part of Gen-Z, it’s hard not to giggle at how dumb they sound in basically every sentence. From the exaggerated lingo to making fun of a collared shirt (because it gives off “single dad” vibes), these young adults don’t hide their snarky, privileged, and incapable demeanors. 

It’s clear that four out of the six characters are destined to get eaten by the ravenous gator. Their fates are all predetermined by each of their aloof attitudes. A hungry and jacked-up gator is floating outside and will munch on anything, so why would anyone go outside to try to fight that? Well, it wouldn’t be a comedy without a touch of stupidity, as more than one person does, indeed, try and fail at their formulaic approach to killing the monster.

‘Bad CGI Gator’ (2023): A Review

We have only two to root for in the end. Typically, in a horror film, the character(s) with the most self-respect and empathy toward others can win. In Bad CGI Gator, the audience can already tell who fits the unsung hero(es) description at the beginning of the movie. Nevertheless, could their ridiculousness ruin any sliver of romance that we’re hoping to see? 

Among the most obvious moments of hyperbole are in the kill scenes. Everyone is aware of what “bad acting” looks like, and we’ve seen actors recreate that hilarity on screen, even by screaming. Our protagonists’ screams and “scared” facial expressions are so exaggerated that the murderous gator looks like the opposite of Cocaine Bear: a super chill yet hangry little devil. Who couldn’t escape something as stupid as that? Apparently, a group of equally stupid kids, and the actors knew exactly how to solidify their characters’ choices and reactions enough to elicit laughter from their viewers. 

Self-Aware CGI

Bad CGI Gator gave everyone a fair warning — there’s bad CGI in this film. The gator looks like it was yanked out of a 2006 video game. Every chomp into human flesh looks like it produces cranberry sauce; each crawl toward its next victim is similar to a clumsy, slithering bear; the electric currents shooting through the little monster show up like a totally fake laugh track during a sitcom; and last, but not least, the gator’s flotation is just pitiful. It’s almost as if the film wants us to feel sorry for how poorly the production created this gator. The audience can’t laugh at it because it’s really trying to exterminate these young influencer wannabes, but it might not get all of them because it’s a laughable contraption, not a reptile. 

Even the night sky looks fake, with a moon that’s reminiscent of a 1940s Hollywood set backdrop. The only believable part of the set is the rental cabin, and even that has a few questionable characteristics, such as its cheap appearance. Yes, anyone can find an affordable rental to stay in, but splitting one up among six people should have at least got them a much better house, not a creepy, dim-lit house in the middle of a swamp. 

Bad CGI Gator is bad, to say the least. It’s not even a good enough film to watch on a rainy, dull day. It’s actually far better to watch it while high, but that’s the viewer’s choice. Any movie that’s brave enough to be this pitiful is strong enough to stand the test of time. There are countless horror movies that had huge budgets, horrible special effects and performances, and they fell into the abyss of anonymity. Bad CGI Gator, on the other hand, can stay afloat with its flying gator because of its purposeful ridiculousness. After all, many love slapstick comedies such as Neighbors and Step Brothers. Bad CGI Gator is an ideal choice for anyone with an open mind looking to laugh.

‘Bad CGI Gator’ (2023): A Review

Bad CGI Gator (2023) Official IGN Trailer

Source: Dead Talk Live

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Elisabeth joined Dead Talk News in 2022 and loves movies and TV! After working for various sites, including Screen Rant and Showbiz Cheat Sheet, Elisabeth joined DTN to critique and review various movies, from horror flicks to Disney live-actions.
Cailen Fienemann is a current student at Le Moyne College pursuing her BA in English and Communications with a film studies minor and a creative writing concentration.  Though uncertain about her career end-goals, any job that allows her to write is a cherished one indeed.