Let me star by saying thins: I know that CREATURE is not the best Benchley movie adaptation (if you don't know what is, you must live under a rock). It is based on his book, called WHITE SHARK. The story is about an oceanographer/ marine biologist with an obseson with the connection between sharks and a hopeful cure for cancer.
The scientist (named Chase) has bought a small island (called Shark's Tooth), which is just off of the coast of the Dominican Republic. As it turns out, the island was used for testing by the navy in the Vietnam War... they developed a special hybrid of sharks and dolphins that could be ealy trained. Also, another experiment went wrong there... they created a hybrid of human and shark (or it evolved from the dolphin hybrid, I'm not sure, but it can adapt VERY quickly, as we find out later...). This Shark-man escapes its cage, kills all of the dolphin-sharks, along with many of the navy officers. It then tries to escape through a drainage tunnel leading to the ocean, only to be caged and hauled through the sea by one of the survivors on a ship... For reasons unknown, he cuts it loose, and the shark-man's cage nks to the ocean floor.
Back to modern times... a fisherman/ treasure hunter/ real jerk discovers the cage, pulls it up onto his ship, and finds it empty. The Shark-man has escaped, and starts a bloody rampage, killing several islanders, some fishermen, etc.
Meanwhile, Chase is vited by his wife and son (perfect timing, right?). The wife is also a marine biologist (she studies seals). Also, the survivor of when the Creature escaped has gone insane, and is now called "Werewolf" because he likes to howl... Chase drags him along, knowing that he knows something about the thing.
Oh, I forgot to mention, the Creature attacks Chase and his wife while they are exploring the old navy research labs, but jumps out of the water to try to bite them, and gets stuck. It then changes, growing legs, lungs, and becoming more humanoid.
The special effects are FREAKING AWESOME! That transformation scene made the movie for me. Stan Winston was in charge of creature FX, and, as always, he does a TERRIFIC JOB!
The acting may have left something to be dered, but the creature FX... Just. WOW.