Frightfest Glasgow: The Invisible Raptor (2024)

Director: Mike Hermosa

Running Time: 114 Minutes

Starring: Mike Capes, David Shackelford, Caitlin McHugh, Sean Astin, Sandy Martin, Bobby Gilchrist, Richard Riehle, Dave Theune, Larry Hankin

As the opening shows eggs cracking open, director Mike Hermosa makes his reference point known as the credits are stylized to resemble those of 1993's Jurassic Park. Where The Invisible Raptor diverges is clear, as The Tyler Corporation have figured out how to genetically engineer a prehistoric raptor which they also made invisible. As scientists perform tests, they soon discover how smart the raptor is when it breaks out of the enclosure.

Meanwhile, paleontologist Dr. Grant Walker (Mike Capes) is fed up with believing he is wasting his PhD working at the DinoWorld amusement park. When he discovers the threat that the unseen raptor poses to his small town, Grant teams up with DinoWorld security guard Denny (David Shackelford) and ex-girlfriend Amber (Caitlin McHugh) to stop the apex predator.

Working off a script from co-writer Johnny Wickham and star Mike Capes, Hermosa crafts a very silly take on a familiar idea. This is seen in the characters, from Grant feeling degraded after being burned on a past discovery, to Denny believing his life was ruined courtesy of an embarrassing childhood incident. The touchpoints may sound serious, yet they are filled out with humorous ideas that are crass, childish, and delivered with great comedic timing. If you wanted a dinosaur film to have many mentions of buttholes, then this is the film for you. 

The humorous tone does not mean that the film forgets the danger such a premise brings, with effective moments utilizing a well-placed bedsheet, or depicting a vicious rampage. While some instances focus on the grisly aftermath of the raptor's destructive streak, there are also moments where the gore is effectively utilized in brutal on-screen killings. It is a fun twist which adds to the films identity, along with the numerous Spielberg references, and the fun uses of invisibility.

Despite the entertainment delivered throughout, not all of the elements work well. Some ideas admittedly feel tenuously connected, leaving the feature to resemble an assembly of hit-and-miss sketch ideas. Considering how the running time feels longer than necessary, one wishes a stronger edit would have helped weed out the less effective gags. When it works, The Invisible Raptor is an entertaining time which embraces the silliness within its premise to a fun degree.

The Invisible Raptor made its UK Premiere at Frightfest Glasgow 2024