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Film / Komodo

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On Emerald Island, you are at the bottom of the food chain.

Komodo is a 1999 direct-to-video thriller from the writer of Anaconda, directed by one of the people responsible for the special effects of Jurassic Park, Michael Lantieri, and starring Kevin Zegers and Billy Burke.

During the 70's, some Komodo Dragon eggs were dumped on the beach of a North Carolina island. Somehow, the baby Komodos survived, and twenty years later they have grown up and taken over the island for themselves. Young Patrick has lost his parents and his dog to the lizards, but didn't see them himself, which has left him traumatized. Now, with his therapist Victoria, who doesn't believe the Dragons are real, he is returning to the island to confront his fears. Soon people are being chomped, and Patrick and Victoria must fight for their lives if they ever hope to make it back home.


Despite its name and creatures, The Curse of the Komodo and Komodo vs Cobra are not sequels to the film.

This film includes the following tropes:

  • Admiring the Abomination: Oates expresses admiration for the komodos, calling them beautiful animals from a scientific standpoint.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Patrick runs off midway through the film and reappears at the end to save Victoria from one of the komodos.
  • Dramatic Shattering: After they return to Patrick's old home, Patrick drops a glass when he sees the pet door boarded up (see Jump Scare below).
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: Denby manages to kill a Komodo with his shotgun before dying of a throat injury.
  • Evil Brit: Bracken, Oates's superior. He blackmails him into solving the komodo problem on the island. He orders Oates to kill the visitors, and refuses to send a medical pickup when Oates demands one.
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  • Eye Scream: One lizard gets a shard of metal jammed into its eye. This initially isn’t enough to kill it, and so the humans have to pound on the metal with a rock to drive it in further to finish it off.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Patrick kills one Komodo by hoisting it into the air with a noose and, while it’s helpless, jamming two metal rods through it.
  • It Can Think: Discussed.
    Oates: I think these things are getting smarter.
    Denby: Either that, or we're getting dumber.
  • Jump Scare: After Patrick escapes from the komodos at the start of the film, his dog Buster follows him back home, and sits in front of the pet door. Then a komodo suddenly bursts through the door and devours it.
  • Kill It with Fire: Subverted with one komodo, and played straight with another. The first one is set on fire by Oates, but it shrugs it off and goes after Victoria. The second is killed by Oates shooting a flare into its mouth, which sets it alight.
  • Malicious Monitor Lizard: Yep, using totally natural wild animals as big scary villains. Although the komodos are very much on the big side, and not just one, but all of them.
  • Misplaced Wildlife: Handwaved. The film takes place on an island off the coast of South Carolina, while komodo dragons live in Indonesia. A bunch of komodo eggs were left on the island by someone back in the 70s, causing the Komodos to show up there. It still doesn't explain how they could survive that long in a radically different climate. It also is a plot point: the Komodos are starving, thus why they've become maneaters.
  • Punch a Wall: After his partner Denby gets killed, Oates punches the wall in rage.
  • Super-Persistent Predator: Justified. The Komodos relentlessly pursue the protagonists, but there are several of them and they are stated to be starving. And Komodo dragons do tend to pursue prey for a long time.
  • Survivor's Guilt: Victoria notes that Patrick has survivor's guilt, because he thinks that he caused his parents' deaths by leading the komodos to them.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Patrick takes one by the end of the film. During his first run-in with the komodos he's scared out of his mind, and when he returns to Emerald Island he's clearly traumatized. When he shows up to save Victoria near the end, he dispatches one of the komodos with a carefully laid trap.