Notes: NewHorizons. 83 minutes. “Driven to extinction. Back for revenge.”
Dr. Jane Tiptree: Diane Ladd
Doc: Raphael Sbarge
Thrush: Jennifer Runyon
Sheriff: Harrison Page
Friar: Clint Howard

Executive Producer: Roger Corman
Produced: Mike Elliott
Written and Directed: Adam Simon
Based on a Novel by: Harry Adam Knight
Special Effects: John Buechler and MagicalMedia Industries, Inc.
Music: Nigel Holton.

Summary: During the credits we see footage of factory “farming”:assembly line chicken slaughter, right to the drain. We readminiscule data printout: “Sample Species: Ostrich. TargetSpecies: Chicken.” Other sample species include iguana,vulture, albatross, pelican, crocodile, turkey. This is all baffling.

A Washington agency wants to find out whatgeneticist Dr. Jane Tiptree, the “fairy godmother of militarybiotech,” is up to lately. She is sequestered doing researchfor Eunice Industries, working on chickens. There, a newly hatched”chick” slashes the face of a worker and escapes. Apoultry plant truck is allowed to leave the compound and whenthe driver stops along the road, he is mauled and killed. Thelocal sheriff is called to the scene and suspects a bobcat. “Ithink they’re extinct.” “Well, maybe they’re makinga comeback.”

We meet a drunk with a gun who chases somepeople away from his machinery at night. This is Doc, who we’resupposed to cheer later. He captures at gunpoint a young womandressed in black around the bulldozer. We find out later shehas conked him on the head a run back to her commune. The sheriffdrives Doc there, past the sign reading “Major corporationsare killing our earth,” but Doc refuses to identify the woman. She later thanks him, revealing her name as Thrush. She speaksof the area being a “dinosaur highway” 60 million yearsago. He is sneeringly anti-environmental, but he insists he justmaintains the machines.

In Washington, the Agency is feeding blueberrypie to officials, then revealing the secret is the goat embryonicfluid coating. They’re also trying to push through an allowancefor silent marketing of cows with turnip DNA. Meanwhile, threeyoung idiots go drinking and driving in the Nevada desert andget killed by the “carnosaur.” The girl’s father isdistraught and Dr. Tiptree promises him he can see his daughter:”Our children are all that matters. What are we anyway excepta set of instructions for the reproduction of the species?” But she lied; she feeds him to another dinosaur instead.

Doc finds “Earthfirst” “hippies”chained to the dozers. He doesn’t shoot them but sneers, “CanI get anyone a uh tofu burger vegetarian sprout wheatgrass sandwichwith some herbal tea?” At night a T-Rex comes, is met witha friendly “Greetings, green brother.” It eats thechained people–lots of gore. Thrush is unharmed inside the dozer.

Cut to the diner where people are eating chickenand chicken salad, into which we later will learn Tiptree introduceda virus which makes women feverish. After various shootings atdinosaurs, Doc pretends to be a worker at Eunice and brings asupposedly drugged dinosaur to Tiptree. She admits him throughsecurity but he has brought a human corpse and a gun. She explainsthat she designed the fever, that the body is a “revolutionarybattlefield” where the “genetic text is being rewritten.” Her assistant Susan has the fever and gives birth to a weirdlizardine thing. Tiptree insists the earth was made and scaledfor the dinosaurs and that she intends to give it back. Doc sneers,”That’s really fascinating. Make a great theme park.” Tiptree harbors guilt for her government and industry developmentswhich have made the world a mess. “The earth isn’t oursto destroy,” says this completely insane madwoman. “Whichcame first–the chicken or the egg. . . . The cosmic egg. Idon’t want to destroy the earth. Just one unruly species. . .. The human species is a disaster. . . . Well, as my mentorDr. Moreau said, ‘In the study of nature, one must become as remorselessas nature.'”

The sheriff shoots a dinosaur but dies himselfwith the Pet Village sign in the background. With women dying(often giving birth to dino-things), Eunice tells Washington agencyreps that they’ve been developing an artificial womb and couldeventually breed female replacement humans–all very Dr. Strangelove. From then on, men in protective suits appear, kill people, andflametorch all evidence.

Doc threatens Tiptree’s eggs and shoots oneto get the antidote. He escapes a dino while running to Thrush,and Tiptree goes into labor. The baby dinosaur rips through herabdomen. Doc reaches Thrush, who has gone into fever. They getinto bulldozers and attack a dinosaur, which they succeed in killingwith Doc’s final remark, “I hate wildlife.” He thencontacts the authorities, “the Cavalry,” who arrive,shoot him, and burn the two in their shack. The antidote bottlebursts in the flames.

Commentary: According to catalogue descriptions, this is “Roger Corman’stongue-in-cheek answer to that other dinosaur movie” JurassicPark. But really, Carnosaur is the most depressingand darkest dinosaur film currently in existence. Too many evilspervade the film for us to side with anyone or anything, especiallyour “hero,” and so after disgust cannot be worn thinner,we can only despair. Brilliance = apocalyptic insanity; everyoneis poisoned with a nauseating fever; even “real” foodis disgusting; and anyone expressing concern over these mattersis portrayed as idiotic.