Creature from Black Lake (1976)

creature from black lake poster 1976 movie
2.0 Overall Score
Story: 2/10
Acting: 2/10
Visuals: 2/10

Fun character actor supporting cast

Story isn't planned out for low budget and poorly paced

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Creature from Black Lake

Studio:  Jim McCullough Productions

Genre(s):  Horror/B-Movie

Release Date(s):  March 11, 1976 (Premiere)

MPAA Rating:  PG

creature from black lake john david carson dennis fimple dub taylor

We’re just a couple of dumb Yankees here to get into trouble

Pahoo (Dennis Fimple) and Rives (John David Carson) are college students from Chicago headed down to Louisiana to research reports of a Bigfoot-type creature haunting the swamps.  While Pahoo and Rives find no one will talk to them, they begin to slowly uncover hints to the creature’s location.  With the sheriff (Bill Thurman) warning them to stay away, a trapper (Jack Elam) who claims to have encountered the monster might be their only hope!

Directed by Joy N. Houck Jr., Creature from Black Lake is a low-budget monster movie.  The film was released to mostly negative reviews.

creature from black lake monster creature costume sasquatch

Can’t a swamp monster just have a day without dealing with idiots?

I always liked Bigfoot growing up and there were a ton of low budget Bigfoot (or sasquatch) movies in the late 1970s.  While some like The Legend of Boggy Creek were bad but creative, many were just awful…Creature from Black Lake is closer to awful.

The story wanders too much and can’t decide its tone.  The adventures of Pahoo and Rives mostly borders on humorous with the character “aw-shucks we’re Yankees in the South” joke getting old quick.  The low-budget nature of the movie doesn’t permit the creature to show up much, but most of the time it isn’t even insinuated it is there…if a horror movie isn’t going to be good, it at least should keep up the horror and not be dull.

The cast is pretty weak.  You have lots of characters actors as the stars but no real solid lead actor.  John David Carson (the son of actor Kit Carson) plays the devoted science student while Dennis Fimple is the hamburger hungry Vietnam vet sidekick and both jockey for the role of comic relief.  Dub Taylor, Jack, Elam, and Bill Thurman help round out the cast playing their normal stock characters and they are all “I know that guy” type of actors…and probably better than the leads.

creature from black lake monster costume bigfoot

I’m here to stomp some idiots!

The movie’s cheap and it looks it.  The sasquatch (which is supposed to be over seven feet and over three hundred pounds) looks stringy and weak in the brief scenes where you can see it.  Most of the action occurs in the dark and the movie doesn’t even seem to make very good use of the swampy setting.  The director really needed to match the script with the budget and a plan on how to work them both together.

Creature from Black Lake can be part of a weekend “Sasquatch” movie-fest, but don’t both to seek this movie out if you aren’t a fan of the genre.  You won’t be scared, you won’t be entertained and since the movie is actually slightly over an hour and a half, it isn’t even the quickest watch.  Visit Boggy Creek if you must, but Black Lake isn’t worth seeing.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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