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Film Review: CrocZilla (2012)


Xiao, befriends Amao a 36 foot crocodile, who lives on his fathers croc sanctuary. Xiao’s father is forced to sell his crocodiles to a gangster who plans to use them for high priced meals. Before Amao is due to be slaughtered, he escapes, slaying his captors in the process. Amongst the chaos, Amao accidentally swallows a bag with $1 million dollars inside. When rumor’s of this spread, the town locals are split with some fearing for their lives and others set out to capture and kill the crocodile, at any cost.


Were it not for a couple of chomping sequences this remarkably bloodless creature feature would qualify as a children’s movie. It features an impossibly winsome little boy, some comic villains and a happy ‘family reunited’ ending that wouldn’t be out of place in a Spielberg movie.

10 year-old Xiao lives in what appears to be a pretty rural part of China and after school likes nothing better than to sneak into his grandfather’s run-down crocodile park, where he has befriended a monstrous 36-foot long female crocodile that he has named Amao. Unfortunately the grandfather’s ruinous financial situation is such that he is forced to sell his beloved crocs to a gang of incompetent gangster / restaurateurs who plan to serve them up to customers who apparently can’t get enough croc meat.

Having watched some of her friends being bloodily despatched by the head chef, Amao quite understandably does a runner and literally heads for the hills, in this case a nearby tea plantation. Quite coincidentally this is the same tea plantation where ditzy model Wen Yan (Barbie Hsu) has been dumped by the side of the road by her scumbag boyfriend. Recently returned to China from Italy where she has been working like a Trojan, Wen Yan finds herself scrambling up a telegraph pole to avoid the jaws of our giant crocodile. Amao leaves her unscathed but to Wen Yan’s loud dismay eats her handbag and with it the 100,000 Euros she had brought back from Italy.

Determined to get her savings back, Wen Yan rushes to the nearest village and rouses local policeman Wang Beiji (Tao Guo) into action. Initially sceptical of this outlandish tale of giant crocodiles and money-swallowing, Wang is slow to react but when he realises that the croc was last seen heading for the weir where his son – little croc-loving Xiao – has been swimming with his friends. Soon the chief gangster / restaurateur hears of the croc’s whereabouts and the pile of cash in its belly and gathers up his band of cowardly goons to recapture his meal ticket.

There’s not much subtlety to CROCZILLA, as you might have gathered from the title (which incidentally is a retitling for Western release; the original title is MILLION DOLLAR CROCODILE). The acting is loud and large, the comedy is very broad and the plot is nothing you haven’t seen a thousand times before. I can’t speak for Chinese tastes in the horror genre but to my eyes this movie is a bewildering mix of styles; the closest thing I can compare CROCZILLA to would be an insane mash-up of LAKE PLACID and HOME ALONE. It lurches from horror to comedy, often within the same scene, without ever really being very successful at either.
The croc is an impressively-realised CGI creation and looks suitably monstrous although it isn’t always very well integrated with the rest of the footage. In fact there’s a kind of fuzzy quality to the photography which, combined with the fact that there isn’t a recognisably human character in the entire movie and the weird disjoint between the actors and the dubbed voices, gives the whole enterprise an almost fantasy quality – further underlining the feeling that you’re watching a kids movie with added bite.

I can’t really recommend CROCZILLA except to those (like me) who are addicted to JAWS clones and even those hardened fans are likely to be disappointed by the toothlessness of this movie. I’ve sat through some pretty cruddy movies in my quest for quality creature features but rarely have I seen one as bland and inoffensive as this; at least when the Italians ripped off JAWS they had the decency to chuck buckets of blood at the screen. So CROCZILLA is, I’m afraid to say, too frightening for kids, not nearly frightening enough for adults and ends up being is a film which is unlikely to satisfy anyone.

CrocZilla (AKA Million Dollar Crocodile) (2012)

About Daniel King

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  1. croczilla is an amazing movie hidden by an awful trailer!!!!!!!!!

    • Thanks Soph Timmy Bean here and I just have to say that I Could not agree more. Croczilla has helped me get my life back on track. Before croczilla I often times found myself looking for a good horror movie to fit me and my life. After croczilla i started to make friends and i’m not hated for who I am. However I did watch the trailer in late june and things took a turn for the Worst. I found myself in an ER after trying to participate in “Sports” (i guess that’s what the cool kids do now a days) I was down I had no life. It seamed as if someone had just thrown a ball in the my road to a better life. While in the Hospital I met many nurses and doctors of asian descent, one even said that Croczilla ate his cat!!!!! How cool is that!!! I wish croczilla would eat my goldfish! Or my whale that I like to take pictures of. 10 years later when I got out of the hospital and went home I found what was left of my dead goldfish… CROCZILLA ATE IT!!!!! But soon i learned to live in harmony with the million dollar crocodile. He introduced me to a person by the name of Sophia with who I share my love for horrible asian crocodile films with. Which reminds me After I met sophia… I DIED!!!

    • This is utter bullshit

      • timmy bean, thank you so much for sharing your opinions on the million dollar crocodile with me!!! I think that maybe you should come to my counselling group sometime! it’s called FTTGOHCHITL (folks trying to get over how croczilla has impacted their lives) and we meet every day from 6 am to 9 pm. it has made an unimaginable difference in my life! I was also in the hospital this past summer with croczilla related injuries… I would rather not go into any further detail. there is also a hotline you can use for your croczilla related issues (1-800-croczillabitmeintheass) or if you have any personal questions for me you can email me at olitecky18@orono.k12.mn.us!!! I hope that you will find everything you need in this message to get over your croczilla experiences!!!!!!!!!!! hope to see you at the meeting tomorrow!!!!

  2. Hello People of the Universe! Timmy Bean here, i just wanted to remind all of my beloved fans out there who actually give a poop about me and horrornews.net, to watch out for the horror that has become known to man kind as CROTCHzilla. Crotchzilla is a serious thing peoples. For all those parents out there I wanted to warn you so that you could save them. So here’s a couple things that Crotchzilla is not. Crotchzilla is not an STD because the audience of crotchzilla probably isn’t going to get anything any time soon. Crotchzilla is not that cool new drug that kids with cool names like Colten, or Alana, and even Shawn. Crotchzilla is NOT your daughter’s 12th boyfriend. No crotchzilla is a biotch. Crotchzilla has effected me in many ways shapes and forms. As a matter of fact this June Crotchzilla injured my crotchal region so bad that I needed surgery. Crotchzilla bit me in the tushie once too.

  3. Croczilla makes my elbow tickle

  4. Hello world. Timmy Bean here and I just wanted to say Croczilla makes every other horror movie look like absolute SHAT! Croczilla makes mirac

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