Then we finally get to titular title character. The film does her no favours by taking place primarily on dry land. This means she has to do lot of awkward writhing about, which takes any potential mystery or menace away. It also means she is pretty easy to avoid. One character says, “I don’t want to die!”. Well, good. Go home, put your feet up and maybe don’t go on any canal holidays any time soon. The mermaid also poses virtually no threat to half the cast of the film as her siren’s charms don’t work on women. Way to reinforce heteronormativity, Killer Mermaid.
However, the film is not without its wonky charms. I loathe the contrived camp of films like the Piranha franchise; films that operate under the assumption that it’s OK to be unfunny and cheap as long as you do it “knowingly”. Cynical crap is still crap. Parody exploitation boobs are still exploitation boobs. With this in mind, it’s rather refreshing to see a high concept horror executed with a relatively straight face. This is epitomised perhaps by the “What The F*ck?” appearance of the amazing Franco Nero. The Django actor turns up to deliver some exposition - and it is the best part of the film. His gravitas perhaps reflects the essence of what the film was trying to achieve; to deliver a high concept horror with some atmosphere.
If only the filmmakers had focused more on the mermaid rather than the tiresome protagonists. Audiences have seen boring love triangles, silly slashers and pouty nymphs before – but what they haven’t seen is a truly “killer” Mermaid. And that’s a fact that remains unchanged when the credits roll.