Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Bats: Human Harvest (2007)

The opening scene of Bats: Human Harvest is a bit confusing. What seems to be happening is that some bats have set a trap for Russian soldiers using a child’s bicycle and some recordings as bait, and then filmed them in the woods when they attacked them. The movie then quickly moves to Iraq, at an Al Qaeda training camp. The trunk of an old car leads to a series of underground chambers. Is that how they fit all those clowns in the tiny circus cars?

We next move to a meeting of CIA folks, who say that through that raid on the camp, they learned of a network trying to obtain nuclear weapons. (Is it the FOX Network?) One of the factories is located in the Belzan Forest, in southern Russia.  The mission is to extract a certain doctor from the area. I think they refer to him as the “WMD Doctor,” so if you have a missile that’s feeling under the weather, you should take it to see this guy.

The film then introduces us to the military team that is going to retrieve the doctor. About the forest, the men are told, “It’s bigger than New York City, and more dangerous.” Maybe so, but it’s certainly also a lot prettier, and without those fucking Yankees fans. One of the team is some Russian chick who, boasting of her patriotism, says “On the fourth of July I like to blow things up.”  Hey, who doesn’t?

We then suffer through a hard rock montage of military guys getting ready for the mission. Who cares? It’s the same garbage we’ve seen hundreds of times. It’s brief, but not brief enough. Once they’re in the field, they find bits of dead guys from the film’s first scene. And though it’s daytime, the bats are flying around. Plus, these bats are meat-eaters, and are like chameleons, having the ability to blend in with their surroundings. Well, not with the sky, or the leaves, but with the bark of the trees they land on.

Soon this military team hears the recordings that lured the Russians into the area. And even though the speakers are plainly visible, attached to the trunks of trees, the sounds seem to confuse the military folks. And though the cameras are high up on the trunks and aimed in one direction, the footage they capture is close-ups at ground level.

Several of the military guys are killed by the bats, but three of them live to capture the doctor, who is running some experiments on the bats. The doctor says the bats were bred to like human blood, except for his own. Apparently he has some kind of special blood that no one else has.

This film is somewhat realistic, in as much as the military team finds no weapons of mass destruction at the location – just some bats.  And it is a bit of harmless fun.  Also, it’s short, coming in at less than 90 minutes.

This brilliant tagline graces the cover of the DVD: “Don’t go near the dark.” Of course, it’s even more stupid, as these bats fly around in the daytime. Bats: Human Harvest stars David Chokachi, Michael Jace, Pollyanna McIntosh, Martin Papazian, Melissa De Sousa and Tomas Arana. It was directed by Jamie Dixon.