Piranhaconda review

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piranhaconda

Whilst in Hawaii, Professor Lovegrove discovers a remarkably rare Piranhaconda egg and steals it from its nest but on his journey to escape, he must overcome a film crew, a kidnap plot and two very angry Piranhaconda parents…

Piranhaconda turns the standard Syfy formula into an entertaining romp with interesting characters, a clear plot, realistic character motivations, witty dialogue, surprisingly ‘meta’ jokes and an interesting hybrid creature.

Despite its meagre budget, Piranhaconda is actually quite adventurous and varied compared to the average Syfy fare. The film has a huge cast, plenty of guns and props, reasonable special effects and vehicle-wise contains cars, vans, boats, quad bikes and a helicopter. Also a rocket launcher.

Gone are many of the cheap production issues that plagued Sharktopus, instead we have nicely framed shots, good editing, no extraneous rubbish or filler material and everything has a nice professional edge. Sometimes the cinematography is a little cheap and the weather changes per-shot occasionally but the entertaining performances, swift pace and clear plot keep the action engaging.

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Jon & Al Kaplan interview

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Creature Feature Interviews

Jon & Al Kaplan (Zombeavers, Dinocroc vs Supergator, Piranhaconda, Gila)

Zombeavers-posterThe horror comedy sub-genre is one of the most difficult balances to achieve on film. Too funny and there is zero tension in the scarier scenes. Too scary and the tonal shifts into comedy ruin the suspension of disbelief.

One of the best example of a great horror comedy is last year’s Zombeavers (review here). One thing that caught my eye in particular was that the film’s screenwriters were also the composers.

Music and screenplays were two fields that I was certain had little to no crossover and I was fascinated about how these guys could be so skilled in two completely different crafts.

So the best way to find out was to chat with the immensely talented Jon and Al Kaplan who, as well as writing and scoring Zombeavers, also served musical duties on Dinocroc vs Supergator, Gila and Piranhaconda.

Read on for our conversation where we discuss how to score a movie, musical influences, Zombeavers 2, other creature feature ideas and the fantastically titled The Hills Have Thighs…

[JS] Let’s start from the beginning; how and why did you get into composing / screenwriting?

[J+AK] Our dad was a concert composer (at least while he was at Manhattan School of Music), and he introduced us to film music right from when we were born. We’ve been composing since we were kids, and while we never thought of it as a career path to start, we ended up doing the USC film scoring program. That still didn’t lead to a career in composing, so we tried screenwriting as a different creative avenue. Then we were looking for ways to combine music and writing, so we did Silence! The Musical. Eventually, we ended up writing Zombeavers because we wanted something new to score.

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