Reviewed by: Andre Manseau
What's it about
An underwater tremor opens up a big fissure, which leads to the release
of thousands of man eating, prehistoric piranha. One bloody spring
Is it good movie?
I was super, super pumped when Piranha finally hit the big screen a few
summers ago. Old school, silly 3D horror was once again gracing the
silver screen and I couldn't have been happier.
Brought to us by Alexandre Aja (director of the awesome Hills Have Eyes
remake), this one stars Elizabeth Shue as Sheriff Julie Forester, who's
charged with trying to get a bunch of foolhardy teenage hardbodies (oh,
that was fun to write) to quit Breaking their Spring after Matt Boyd's
(Dreyfuss Jaws cameo! yes) body turns up chewy.
She teams up with Deputy Fallon (Ving Rhames), the no-nonsense dude who
doesn't love the water. After visiting crazy scientist Goodman (Chris
F'n Lloyd), they confirm that things are about to get bad. Of course,
her stupid son (Steve McQueen) decided to party on Spring Break instead
of watching his younger siblings, and get stuck on a Girls Gone Wild
boat with his hot girlfriend (Jess Szohr) and the scummy people making
the feature (Jerry O'Connell and Paul Scheer). O'Connell is campy and
fun, and it's great (and bizarre) to see Elizabeth Shue back in a
leading role like this. Of course, we can't forget there are plenty of
piranhas come to make the waters run red.
There's really not a whole lot to say about this flick. One of the
taglines for it was "Sea, Sex and Blood". That pretty much sums things
up. If you love seeing young, beautiful people in swimsuits, you're in
for a treat because that's just about everyone in the film.
The movie zips along at a pretty quick pace, and is played with its
tongue firmly in cheek. There's a ton of gore (the big spring break
massacre is awesome), and lots of goofy laughs. The flick isn't scary
in almost any sense of the word. If you came for naked boobs, there are
plenty of them, including a really memorable sequence invovling Kelly
Brook and Riley Steele as they swim underwater.
The flick also has some fun cameos that I won't spoil. In terms of the
downside, I'd have to say that the only real complaint I had is that
the piranha tend to look pretty bad. I mean, I know the flick is meant
as camp, but the fish look brutal sometimes with some bad CGI. This is
a minor complaint.
Ultimately, Piranha exists to entertain you in the silliest and most
visceral ways possible. watch the trailer. If the flick looks like fun,
chances are you'll dig it.
Video / Audio
Video comes to us in 2.40:1
anamorphic widescreen in full 1080p and looks absolutely gorgeous.
Seriously, I often pop in the Piranha Blu-Ray just to show off my
system. The movie is absolutely beautifully shot and comes through in
gorgeous, vibrant colors. Really nice stuff here.
Audio is presented in DTS-HD
Master Audio 5.1 and it comes through loud, clear and balanced. Another
great mix from Sony.
Note: I couldn't get a great
picture of the cover art, but I got the nifty new steelbook edition of the flick. It's
the same release, and comes with a DVD
copy of the film as well.
First up we get an Audio Commentary
with director Alexadre Aja and producers Gregory Levasseur and Alix
Taylor. This is super informative, but a bit dry considering the
subject matter. A lot of technical specifications are discussed, as
well as the effects.
Don't Scream, Just Swim: Behind the
Scenes of Piranha 3D is a shockingly thorough documentary about
the filming of this flick. It's over TWO hours long! There's nothing
more you could possibly want as an extra. This is awesome stuff, a
great companion piece that is a surprising addition to a movie that is
essentially a nostalgic joke.
Rounding out the disk are a few deleted
scenes, some storyboard
sequences and some trailers
and TV spots for the flick.
There's nothing wrong with loving this silly, stupid movie. It's a
summer's guilty pleasure and I enjoy watching it any time I need a
little pick me up. And although I'll be crucified for saying it, I even
liked the absurd and roundly despised sequel, Piranha 3DD. But that's a
whole other review for a whole other day!