Rana: The Legend of Shadow Lake aka Croaked: Frog Monster from Hell – USA, 1975

 
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Rana: The Legend of Shadow Lake (UK video title: Rana: The Creature from Shadow Lake) is a 1975 horror film produced and directed by Bill Rebane (The Giant Spider Invasion). It stars Paul Callaway, Richard Lange, Glenn Scherer, Brad Ellingson, Karen McDiarmid, Alan Ross, Julie Wheaton, Jerry Gregoris, Jim Iaquinta and Bruno Alexander.

Re-titled Croaked: Frog Monster from Hell, the film was distributed on VHS by Troma Entertainment in 1982. In his book All I Need to Know about Filmmaking I Learned from the Toxic Avenger, Troma president Lloyd Kaufman lists this film as one of the five worst Troma films ever released (along with The Capture of Bigfoot, also directed by Bill Rebane).

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Eleven-year-old When Kelly Morgan had a terrifying encounter with Rana, a strange half man/half frog monster that lives in a lake. The creature killed his father and many other people before Kelly seemingly destroyed it. Now a young man he returns to the lake to search for the monster’s hidden treasure. Unfortunately, the creature is still alive…

Reviews [click links to read more]:

” … the frog-man looks exactly like a man dressed up like a frog. If it weren’t for some deep, guttural ribbiting (which is inexcusably underused) and the color of his skin, there wouldn’t be much about him that’s frog-like. There’s not too much more to say about our presumably web-footed nemesis, honestly. He shows up at random intervals, kills or scares someone, retreats to his underwater lair, and generally undermines the folklore and suspense the enterprise would rather be characterized by.” Not Coming to a Theater Near You

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“Rebane’s story is fine; as with anything else, it’s all in how it’s told. The dark green mossy woods and murky, foreboding waters of Wisconsin set an appropriately eerie mood. The problem is that Rebane (as director) is ill-equipped to set up a shot so that it pays off. Even the shock scenes are undermined by the fact that there is either too long an establishing shot so as to ruin the suspense or too sudden a close-up on the payoff.” Mecha-Blog-Zilla

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” …for those twisted ones who enjoy, devour and laugh like crazy at badly made cinema, well, this one is amazing! There is truly Ed Wood type dialogue in this flick – awful, unintentionally hilarious dialogue – in fact the THIRD line of the whole film is “We’re so isolated on this island” Yes – now THAT’S exposition! The performances are terrible, the guy playing the crazy Ol’ hermit gives a 110% and it is a horrible peice of mugging – he’s the kind of cliched crazy old timer who actuallys says “heap o’ trouble” THREE times in the course of a minute – I kid you not. You never see the “creature” until WAY near the end and the costume is ridiculous.” Obscure Films

Buy Croaked: Frog Monster from Hell on Troma DVD from Amazon.com

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Filming locations:

Wisconsin

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