Zaat (Dr. Z) (Attack of the Swamp Creatures) (Blood Waters of Dr. Z) (Legend of the Zaat Monster) (Hydra) Reviews

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Super Reviewer
½ November 3, 2009
Oh my. In my love of B-movie toilet fodder, how have I never heard of this film? It's right up there with the films of Larry Buchanan and Al Adamson in its badness. In other words, it's wonderful.

It starts off with this weird narration (the only dialogue for the first 20 minutes) while you watch scenes of various creepy underwater creatures. Turns out the narration is coming from some doctor who decides that the world needs to be taken over by sea creatures. So he turns himself into some Gill Man-like monster (only not nearly as scary or as cool) by dunking himself into a pool of water with some chemical abbreviated ZAAT. This stuff is pretty bad-ass in that it turned him from human to monster in like 5 minutes. Then he starts kidnapping women to turn them into similar creatures so he can breed with them and populate the earth. In the meantime, there's a sheriff and a some environmentalists or marine biologists (I'm not clear which) who are concerned about walking catfish in Florida. They all eventually meet grisly ends at the hands of the dr/sea monster...oops, sorry. Didn't mean to give anything away.

Best scene: The sheriff enters a house where a bunch of hippies are listening to some dork on a guitar sing godawful folk music with flute back-up (reminded me of Stephen Bishop in Animal House -- "I gave my love a chicken..."). The next scene shows the sheriff walking down the street with the hippies following him, still playing music and clapping (badly) along. He leads them to a jail cell, tells them they'll be safe there, and WE NEVER SEE THEM AGAIN! WTF are these people anyway?

I'm giving this trash 1.5 stars as not to mislead anyone that it's actually a good film. It's not. The special effects are terrible, and the actors are all stiff as boards. But in terms of entertainment value, I could easily give it a four. God bless the Barton Film Co. of Jacksonville, FL.
½ May 23, 2011
Some bad movies are entertaining... some are just plain boring. This is one of the boring ones. Even the barrage of jokes from MST3K can't help this one.
May 12, 2011
A terrible terrible film, made watchable only by the MST3K fellas, a version that's worth a look.

I'd pass on this normal version if I were you.
½ December 30, 2014
When you talk about a bad movie, it's hard not to mention Zaat. This is like the Plan 9 of 1971, you can't make something this bad by accident. If the script would have been better written, it could have been a good movie, but it's crap. Badly acted, schlocky effects and stupid plot, this is not a recommended movie, although the MST3K version was funny, but even that starts to get boring after a wile, Zaat is shit.
July 19, 2011
Want to see a promising premise ("promising" may be a bit strong ... let's say "intriguing") ruined by inept execution? This is the kind of low budget film where if a character has to walk from point A to point B, you're going to see every single step they take, preferably with the camera nailed down in one place ... and characters do a lot of walking from point A to point B and back to point A again. This flick has some great moments (most notably a sheriff rescuing a hippy sing-a-long), but absolutely nothing is happening in 75-80% of the film. It's painfully dull.
½ October 10, 2013
Thursday, October 10, 2013

(1975) Hydra
HORROR

All it is, is just a guy wearing a suit which the overall film is like watching another one of Roger Cormon's movies. Cheaper and low budget variation of "the Creature From the Black Lagoon". One of the most stupidest movies I had ever saw which centers on yet about another crazed scientist wanting to create another being that able that person to also live underwater by combining some DNA collected from a catfish, and at the same time contaminates the lake by infecting it with radiation. As Hydra brazenly walks around the city, and not a single person spots him is probably the most silliest thing I had ever saw especially if the population is like nil, and not a single person can figure out anything either. Dumb cast, dumb movie.

Bomb
May 8, 2013
I would like to make up a title myself:

-THE WALKING NAZI CATFISH MAN WHO CONQUERED A SLEEPY TOWN IN FLORIDA-

How's that for a slice of cherry pie? The first twelve minutes consist of a retarded marine biology lesson, stock full of aquatic stock footage. And then it gets real bad. Face clawing bad.
January 31, 2013
What horrifying creature will be unleashed when Nazi scientist Dr. Kurt Leopold injects himself with his own sinister serum, ZAAT? Half man, half catfish, ALL TERROR! The mad mutant monster sets off into the Everglades to spread his pollution with the intent of taking over not just all of Southern Florida, but the entire universe!! What is ZAAT, exactly? A mind-blowingly absurd and absolutely horrendous creature-feature that throws back to the "Do It Yourself" Horror films of Roger Corman. After seeing ZAAT, one would welcome the CREATURE FROM THE HAUNTED SEA any day, as Dr. Leopold's mutant form look more like a cross-breed between a baboon and a mossy green turd than a catfish. The film is a failure on all fronts, and it would be completely unwatchable were it not for the fact that the audience becomes glued to the screen, wondering where the hell the plot could possibly go next? At one point, the monster attempts to take a mate (with deadly results), and later, the town sheriff punishes us by making us listen to a full fifteen-minutes of terrible folk singing before locking the group up for their own protection. Despite the film's recent rediscovery and remastering, ZAAT is sure to fall right back into obscurity where it belongs, far away from the young, impressionable minds that might mistake this for Horror.
October 20, 2012
i havent even seen it
March 11, 2012
It's a interesting little flick, but it's not underrated. It's low budgeted, it's awful, but it's a cult classic (partially thanks to MST3K.) The creature is pretty crazy looking, the plot is silly and goes no where, the ending is bad, and the characters aren't great. It does offer entertainment though for those of us who enjoy these types of movies.
January 3, 2011
my worst film of all time
January 3, 2011
This was awful, and stupid. Walking catfish? wtf!
October 27, 2010
ZAAT or DR.Z or THE BLOOD WATERS OF DR.Z (1975): is the bottom of the barrel 70's 'B" monster movie, the plot summary sums up this films stupidity. A Nazi mad scientist who lives in Florida turns himself into a giant catfish monster and (hold your breath for a moment.....) Goes on a rampage and kills anyone who doubted his theory. However the doctor doesn't look like a catfish monster, No the creature in this film looks like the bastard child of the Gill man and a seahorse. I don't need to say too much on this film expect for two things. One) its number 10 ranking on IMDB's Bottom (as of the date this review was posted) is justified .And Two) the film was made for the cult comedy series Mystery Science Theatre 3000 to make fun of in one of their last seasons (under the title THE BLOOD WATERS OF DR.Z).


Final thoughts on ZAAT or DR.Z or THE BLOOD WATERS OF DR.Z (1975): A dull, stupid and just plain bad monster movie that's sillier than most bad monster films I've seen so far. Overall ZAAT is just another bad 70's monster film that rates right up there with OCTAMAN, THE INCREDIBLE MELTING MAN, BLOOD FREAK and TRACK OF THE MOON BEAST. 20%
½ September 1, 2010
Oh dear. Where to begin? Let?s just start by saying that this is a very low budget production, and it shows, in every possible way. There are no actors with any previous experience in film or TV. Production values are abysmal. I wonder if some of the actors were even paid. Yet even this doesn?t for just bad it is.
The plot involves a bitter scientist who turns himself into a human catfish and releases chemicals into a small Florida town?s water supply as part of his plan to turn humanity into fish and conquer the world. He then proceeds to take revenge on the former colleagues he feels wronged him, and to kidnap first one, then another woman to serve as his fish bride, before the authorities catch on.
At this point, you?ve probably already spotted the clichés; the mad scientist bent on revenge and world domination, and the monster kidnapping a bride. There are also the expert scientists who come to investigate, and the obligatory incompetent hick sheriff. At least he doesn?t come off as crooked or racist.
And the plot problems don?t end with the clichés. If the townspeople knew that Doctor Leopold was a Nazi who had performed strange experiments, why hadn?t they already run him out of town or sent him to an asylum? How could the sheriff not immediately realize the doctor was linked to the monster? Even a total moron should have considered the man who?d put forth a thesis on turning men into fish as a person of interest. And what are the chances that the doctor?s colleagues from the university would all live in the same sleepy little town?
A far greater problem is that we never believe for a minute that his plan can succeed. The oversized, flesh eating catfish he releases are little more than a nuisance to the townspeople. His tampering with the water supply- which is supposed to transform the people into fish- only causes nausea, dizziness, and other minor health problems. This might be because he?s spreading the formula with a squirt bottle. Results improve when he goes on land and begins killing folks himself, but even then it only amounts to a handful of murders. This guy can?t even conquer Hicksville, much less the world!
I also have to wonder why, if this was shot in Florida, is the scenery so drab. Several springs are mentioned in the credits, but it mostly looks like swamps and murky ponds. Even the beach at the end is far from scenic. Maybe it?s just the poor quality of the photography, and these places are actually beautiful in real life. I don?t know.
What I do know is that the indoor sets are even worse. The professor?s lab is obviously someone?s basement. Inside are props such as a waist-high above ground pool, a jury-rigged apparatus for lowering victims into said pool, and various consoles with lots of knobs and flashing lights. One console looks suspiciously like a carnival fortune telling machine. There is also a drugstore, which is completely unlike any you would encounter in real life. For one thing, there are no counters, or registers. In fact, the entire room is one open space. The only shelves are built into the walls, and are lined with pill bottles, all of them out of their packaging, which I?m fairly sure is illegal.
As with any super low budget creature feature, there is a comparatively large amount of stock footage. But its use here is particularly inept and downright puzzling. For some reason, the director felt the need to cut to clips of marine life during underwater attack scenes. I personally would rather see the doctor struggling with his victims than footage of turtles and crawfish. Swamp creatures just don?t provide good reaction shots. There?s also the problem that much of the stock footage is of ocean life, while the scenes take place in freshwater. Did the filmmakers think audiences wouldn?t know that coral reefs aren?t usually found in lakes and bayous?
The use of flashbacks, although sparse, is still more perplexing. It?s not unusual for a killer to flash back to when his victim wronged him. But why on earth does he have to flash back to what they were doing the moment before he attacked them?
This movie can also be painful to listen to. The soundtrack consists mostly of over processed electronic ?music? in the style of Phillip Glass, and the opening credits are accompanied by ?Sashay through the Sargassum?, which would surely have won the award for worst original song if the Razzies had been invented yet. We the audience must also suffer through Doctor Leopold?s Mad ramblings, such as ?Sargassum, the weed of deceit?, and ?Nets are no longer for fish. We may use them on you humans if you survive.? These lines and many more are all delivered in the same tedious monotone.
I?ve put off describing the ?human-catfish? suit for as long as I can. Whoever designed this suit had absolutely no idea what a catfish looks like. The suit has no whiskers. It does have lots of bony scales, whereas real catfish are smooth skinned. There is also a coating of algae in certain places, which gives the impression of fur. As for the face, I?ll defer to Mike Nelson, who described it as an ?amphibious warthog.?
I should also add that the guy playing the monster clearly has no experience in suit acting. All his movements are slow and jerky, and several points, he stops and just stands there for a while before moving again. There?s also a part where the deputy gets bitten on the leg by a water moccasin and spends the rest of the film limping as a result. This is nothing like the symptoms of a real snakebite.
I could go on and on, but I?ll end by saying that the only things right with this movie is that it?s in color, it has continuity, and you can hear most of the dialogue clearly. That?s really not much. I would recommend seeing the Mystery Science Theatre 3000 version. Under no circumstances save severe insomnia should you watch the original cut.
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