“Where in the world,” I barked, indigent, “do meerkats and chupacabras co-exist in the same habitat?”
Husband, round clear vowels disguising any impatience he may have felt, intoned, “Noooowheeeeere.”
Even before the words were out of my mouth I knew this was a dumb question and that I should stop watching Tivo’d SyFy Saturday night craptaculars and get some real work done.
Then we un-paused Chupacabra: Dark Seas (aka Chupacabra Terror) and wallowed in the hilarity.
There will be spoilers in this post, but only for those not astute enough to figure out that a movie whose ads imply it might as well be titled “Chupacabra on the Love Boat with buckets of fake blood and a guy in a rubber monster suit” is going to involve a chupacabra getting loose on a cruise ship.
[embedded: Chupacabra: Dark Seas (aka Chupacabra Terror) trailer]
Giancarlo Esposito plays a cryptozoologist transporting an animal in the cargo hold of a cruise ship. It’s a chupacabra, but don’t tell anyone! It’s a chupacabra who lives on a caribbean island with meerkats! Silly meerkats, why do you think you should only live in Africa?
And the cruise? It’s a chupacabra-themed cruise!
I don’t wish to ruin it for you, but when the chupacabra breaks out of the cargo hold and starts chowing down on all the tasty passengers and crew, he doesn’t look anything like the novelty chupacabra carved vegetable centerpiece shown in that photograph.
Alien dragons? Fat chance we’ll forget that.
Esposito plays accent roulette, mumbling through awkward dialogue as his chupacabra gets loose on the ship and mayhem ensues.
“I have trapped it before. I can trap it again!”
He says that line more than once. In the same scene.
The captain’s daughter is also the ship’s Tae Bo instructor. I’d forgotten about Tae Bo. I found this fantastic New York Times article (March 21, 1999) about Tae Bo:
A friend of mine says that Tae-Bo is the macarena of exercise: irresistible moves with a beat that anyone can do and look sort of O.K. Men and women, young and old, all ”get” Tae-Bo, because a punch is an instinctive move.
Nothing about yoga, by contrast, is instinctive. (You remember yoga, don’t you? The ”inner” workout?) Yoga is weird and painful and elitist; it made you feel like you weren’t quite a member of the club. And that awful feeling of being left out meant that you weren’t primed to receive the mystical yummies that yoga was hawking. Besides, unless you were writhing around with all your pierced buddies down at Jivamukit on Lafayette Street in Manhattan, yoga was boring.
Perhaps oneness is out. In any case, the mild aggression of Tae-Bo feels like a welcome palate cleanser.
I just looked up at the screen and someone was on fire. I have no idea who or why. I don’t think it matters, it just looked cool. The Navy Seals (who up to this point I thought were supposed to be some sort of comedy-relief coast guard auxiliary) are ineffective at stopping the chupacabra. Luckily, the captain, his daughter and his old navy buddy who happens to be on the cruise, save the day.
The captain’s daughter defeats the chupacabra with – I am not making this up – Tae Bo.
Husband proclaims, “You can’t use yoga on a chupacabra!” Which would have made a great tagline for this movie.
Then we watched Chupacabra vs the Alamo, which stars Erik Estrada as a DEA agent who does battle with….chupacabra. At the Alamo. On Cinco de Mayo. Sure, why not? The Onion A/V Club hits all the highlights so I don’t have to, although I would like to state for the record that I think the chupacabras in Alamo would be more realistic than the one in Dark Seas, if chupacabras were real.
One last thing: one of the actors in Chupacabra: Dark Seas played Amy the gorilla in Congo.