The Relic
The Relic
R | 10 January 1997 (USA)
The Relic Trailers

A homicide detective and an anthropologist try to destroy a South American lizard-like god, who's on a people eating rampage in a Chicago museum.

Reviews
Tedfoldol

everything you have heard about this movie is true.

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Plustown

A lot of perfectly good film show their cards early, establish a unique premise and let the audience explore a topic at a leisurely pace, without much in terms of surprise. this film is not one of those films.

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Abbigail Bush

what a terribly boring film. I'm sorry but this is absolutely not deserving of best picture and will be forgotten quickly. Entertaining and engaging cinema? No. Nothing performances with flat faces and mistaking silence for subtlety.

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Isbel

A terrific literary drama and character piece that shows how the process of creating art can be seen differently by those doing it and those looking at it from the outside.

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Stephen Abell

With some of the dire, drab and boring horror movies which are getting good credit and reviews it was nice to jump in a time machine, thanks to terrestrial television (and the Horror Channel), and see how horror should be done.This was a breath of fresh air especially after watching The Babadook.Though there's a lot of action in the film and a smidgen of science fiction there's more elements of horror. There's an occult/religious angle, there's a demonic beast on the hunt for its next victim, which it dispatches in a very nasty way indeed, but most of all there's tension and suspense by the bucket-of-blood load.All of this is handled brilliantly under the experienced direction of Peter Hyams, he does a great job of keeping so many components from spilling over while keeping the story believable. Taking a story of this magnitude and getting the reader/viewer to believe it could actually happen is a skill. The first time they think this cannot be real then the writer and director have lost. So respect is also due to the writers and screenwriters for a very impressive job. If somebody want's to make a decent Stephen King adaptation then they should take notes from this movie.More respect for the creature creation wizard Stan Winston as this is some of his finest work in the horror genre... except of course "John Carpenter's The Thing". The scene where the beast catches a member of the S W A T team while he's running away and pulls his head off his body is awesome; this would have been spectacular to see on the big screen and one of the reasons I prefer wet-work over CGI in effects.Though there are no big name actors in the film they still give credible performances. The only one that partially hams it up is Chi Muoi Lo, who plays Dr Grant Lee, his character is meant to be annoying but Lo does tend to go over the top; luckily enough he's not in the movie much.This is an enjoyable horror film which romps away joyously in the action sequences and slows to a creepier pace in the suspenseful scenes. This film speaks to more than just horror movie fans and I would definitely recommend this to everyone to watch just once.

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Leofwine_draca

THE RELIC has to be one of the most disappointing monster movies ever made. I remember buying this on VHS when it first came out back in 1998 and feeling completely disappointed by it. The problem isn't the story, which is run-of-the-mill monster nonsense. It's a combination of the execution and the script, which combine to equal one of the most lacklustre monster flicks of all time. The movie takes an age to get going. Before anything in the region of 'interesting' happens, we're introduced to a bunch of particularly bland or detestable characters. When a slumming-it Tom Sizemore, playing a tired-looking cop, is the best character in the film, you know you're in trouble.Penelope Ann Miller is one of those actresses who just seemed to disappear from our screens around this time. It's easy to see why; she's neither photogenic nor a talented actress, and when you combine this with her interfering, irritating character it makes for a bad combination. Her 'frightened face' is one of the funniest things I've ever seen. Look out for a couple of clichés at her workplace: the crotchety, gnarled old boss (Linda Hunt), the wheelchair bound genius (old timer James Whitmore, who deserves better), and the sinister, treacherous Asian (Lo Chi Muoi).Attempts are made to make things interesting by throwing in some gruesome crime scene shots of a severed head, but these do nothing to increase the entertainment value. Instead the movie plods on, cliché follows cliché, and finally we get a look at the beast: not Stan Winston's best work, it has to be said, the monster here looks like a primal rip-off of PREDATOR and is animated via some poor CGI (the laughable tongue scene is a real low point of the movie). In the last reel the film actually picks up, although by then it's too little, too late. We get a few cool scenes of the monster munching on party guests and taking apart a few SWAT guys (they even throw in the old 'severed guy' gag) before a ludicrous climax in which Miller manages to outrun a fireball that, in reality, would explode in about three milliseconds (but gets stretched out to a full 30 seconds here). Peter Hyams is one of my least favourite directors but even by his low standards he's slacking on this one. It's a crashing bore of a monster flick.

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FlashCallahan

A researcher at Chicago's Natural History Museum returns from South America with crates containing his findings. When they arrive at the museum without the owner there appears to be very little inside. Police discover gruesome remains on the cargo ship that brought the crates, and then another murder in the museum itself. Investigating the murder is Lt. D'Agosta who enlists the help of Dr. Green at the museum. Unknown to both though, there is a large creature roaming the museum, which is preparing itself for a benefit reception......The relic hasn't aged very well since the last time I saw this back in 1998, and the script doesn't hold up either. The film is basically Night At The Museum for adults, and about as entertaining.It's by the numbers stuff, museum gets dark, people get picked off every now and again, the monster isn't seen until the very end, and only two teachers from Kindergarten Cop and Tom Sizemore can save the day.If this were made today, it'd be released straight to Blu Ray and vanish without a trace.The years have been really unkind to this film.Not as good as I remember.

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ovidnine

I remember seeing this movie in the theaters when I was 17 and enjoying it. I saw it was on Netflix instant and gave it a whirl...I'm not going to rip into this movie because it was full of clichés, its a monster movie for goodness sake. As far as the "ancient idol/horrible monster/kill everyone around" genre goes, its not bad at all. I enjoy Tom Sizemore as an actor and while the script was what one would expect of 4 credited (and lord knows how many uncredited) screenwriters, I felt he did a good job as his character. Honestly for a movie of this type, the acting was just fine. They weren't required to do much, but that was OK.However, if you watch this movie, get used to entire scenes where you have no idea what is happening because its so dark. I understand, keep the settings dim to create fear (and realism, the power is out most of the time though why everyone in the museum works in near total darkness 99% of the time is a bit mind-boggling) but I can't be scared if I can't see what's happening when I'm supposed to!Dark, extremely dark shots keep the viewer in the (I can't do it), keep the viewer confused in many scenes. It was bad enough that a moderate length movie (109m) seemed MUCH longer and not in a good way. Much like gimmicky camera tricks or abuse of slow-motion (I'm looking at you John Woo) can ruin a movie, the overly dark nature of so many shots just leaves you sitting there wish you could tell what the hell was going on.I will say, possibly watching it on a larger screen, or a better quality television (mine is a 32" Sony LCD, nothing fancy) might mitigate lighting issues a bit, I don't know.Overall, its an OK movie for the genre that is partially ruined by not being able to tell what the hell is going on.

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