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Piranha (1978)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Joe Dante

Starring:
Bradford Dillman/Paul
Heather Menzies/Maggie
Kevin McCarthy/Dr. Hoak
Dick Miller/Buck
7 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
A bunch of mutated piranhas (government's fault…again) are accidentally released into a lake. The problem is it’s the same lake the daycamp kids swim in and the same lake that connects to the swimming area of a recently opened tourist (fat people) resort. It’s up to the resident alcoholic and the visiting bimbo to save the day. "Bon Appetit"
THE LOWDOWN
This movie is a parody/ homage/rip-off of JAWS and it doesn’t hide it. Is it fun? You bet it is. Is it dated? You bet it is. Is it worth the trip? Most definitely. Let's go for a swim.
GORE
Enough…Most of the time you only see a lot of red appear in the water but you have the occasional meaty surprises such as : chewed up feet, bit off cheek and a surfacing corpse.
ACTING
Tongue in cheek all the way, and it cracked me up. Bradford Dillman (Paul) is one funny mother. He is the king of deadpan and delivers a funny, tough as nails performance. Heather Menzies (Maggie) breasts also perk up to the challenge and the chemistry between them and Dillman is amazing.

The great character actor Dick Miller (Buck) also does a great job at playing a mean corrupted Dick Miller.
T & A
Yes, we have 'em. The opening sequence (Jaws inspired) blesses us with a great pair of knockers and of course Heather Menzies' breasts have a great memorable cameo. For the ladies there’s a dude that takes off his shirt to reveal a hairy chest…I know life isn’t always fair.
DIRECTING
The "Dante" humour is very present with nods to JAWS all over the place. Dante keeps the movie running at a decent pace, some minor suspense and no style… but that’s ok…where else can you see piranhas chew on children and fat slobs…Thanks Dante.
SOUNDTRACK
I’m sure there’s a score but I didn’t notice it. One thing that did register is that awful noise the piranhas make when they eat…crude but effective.
BOTTOM LINE
The movie pokes fun at itself and lets us in on it. It’s funny, funny and funny. One downside that may turn off lots of people is that the movie is dated. It feels old. But if you keep your mind open, be a bit more patient you’ll most likely have a good time. I mean it’s a movie about piranhas eating people…can you even go wrong?
BULL'S EYE
If you loved Heather Menzies' breasts that much and need more, check the PlayBoy back issues, she bared it all for Hefner.

Piranha 2:The Spawning was directed by James (king of the world) Cameron.

Dick Miller and Kevin McCarthy are "Joe Dante" regulars. Look for Miller in Gremlins, The Burbs and for McCarthy in Innerspace, The Howling…to name a few.
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6:03PM on 08/22/2010
Ahhhh, one of my favorite Corman offerings. Funny, fast paced and the best Jaws knock off around.
Ahhhh, one of my favorite Corman offerings. Funny, fast paced and the best Jaws knock off around.
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