Friday, August 20, 2010

Box Office Review – Piranha 3D

Those who go into Piranha 3D expecting a serious movie are kidding themselves. The movie has been marketed all along and as a guilty pleasure 80s horror tribute. Everyone involved in making the film is in on the joke, but it remains to be seen if the audience will be.

Piranha 3D is a fairly well made film if you are into movies that are more about gore and mayhem then they are about story. That's not to say that its story is horrible. The story is classic for the genre, and very similar to the story of Jaws. A town sheriff (played by Elizabeth Shue) has her hands full while dealing with the spring break crowd at the town lake. An event happens that releases a school of prehistoric piranha. Meanwhile the sheriff's son is out on the lake when he should be babysitting his younger brother and sister. Eventually his brother and sister end up on the lake and Shue's character has to rescue them from the million year old demon fish at the end of the film.

This story is even closer to Jaws then the original Joe Dante film, and it works just fine. Richard Dreyfuss even plays the same character he did in Jaws, but legally he doesn't. He just wears the same hat. The rest of the cast is pretty good. Adam Scott plays a scientist in charge of checking in on the lake after the earthquake that unleashed the piranhas. He has a good action scene involving a shotgun and a jet ski. Unfortunately, Scott's role in the film is much too small. That also goes for Ving Rhames, Eli Roth, Paul Scheer, and Christopher Llyod. They all have great roles they are just underused. The stand out performance in the films goes to Jerry O'Connell as Derick Jones a sleazy video producer. He went all in for his performance and was such a despicable character that by the time his death scene came around I was glad to see him go.

This whole movie is seemingly filled with despicable characters that meet their end in crazy disgusting ways. Most of the people who die are just wild spring breakers, so it serves them right. Director Alexadre Aja dreamed up some insane ways for people to be mauled and mangled in this movie. The most interesting being a girl who gets her hair caught in the prop of a motor boat. Plenty of other people end up with severed lower halves, missing limbs, and exploding heads. The movies main scene of carnage is very detailed scene as at times there are hundreds of people on screen at once. The effects were done mostly practical and this movie is another film that proves practical effects are much superior to cg.

This type of movie is made for a certain type of horror fan, the kind that is looking for a good time along with some minor scares, and a ton of blood. Piranha 3D delivers all this in a tight eighty nine minute package.

A Good Banana

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