Island of the Fishmen (1979)

Spread the weird


DIRECTOR– Sergio Martino

REVIEW– Bucking the trend of the late 70s Star Wars craze, Italian filmmaker Sergio Martino decided to go the “fishman” route. I can’t speak to Sergio’s other life choices, but this one seems ill-advised. Mr. Martino didn’t invent the fishman genre (see Creature Of The Black Lagoon), but he certainly ended it. I can’t recall any fishdude pictures since this one. There was that Titanic film a few years back with Celine Dion, but contrary to internet rumors, Ms. Dion is not a fishwoman.

A sorry group of Italian macho men taking a Caribbean cruise together, stop at a maniacal madman’s port of call. Instead of locals crowding the ship trying to sell turtle carvings… instead of sunburned tourists climbing waterfalls… instead of rows and rows of Senor Frogs, Margaritavilles, and Hooters stuffed with drunk couples in search of reliving their youth… well, we get voodoo dolls, spear-lined booby traps, the lost city of Atlantis, drug-addicted fishmen, and Barbara Bach!

Lots and lots of Barbara Bach…

Which is a good thing if you like vapid stares and emotionless acting from your leading lady.

Every now and then the director throws in an angry fishman attacking some poor Italian extra. Usually, it’s just a shot of a rigid fin/hand prop-thingy with claws slapping the extremely hairy chest of said Italian extra… then some blood and really badly dubbed screaming.

But, way way too quickly, we’re right back to Barbara Bach and her mindless version of acting.

Believe me when I say that after about 30 minutes of watching Barbara doing her best imitation a brain dead deaf-mute, you start to wish one of those fishpersons would just end her (and our) misery and murder Ms. Bach.

Unfortunately, she survives the WHOLE movie.

Your brain may not.

Debbie’s baptism did not go as planned.