When writing my blog entries, I generally make some token effort to
avoid major spoilers. DVD write-ups are obviously the exception, as
there’s kind of a statute of limitations to how long you can keep a
secret about movies. Still, I do try to avoid spoilers so that any of my
readers (all twelve of you, bless your hearts) who want to see the
movie in question can get the full experience for themselves. But for
this one, can we please just cut the shit?
Seriously, the movie is called Piranha 3D (or just Piranha,
as it appeared in the opening credits). Just from the title, you know
what you’re going to get. What’s more, anyone with half a brain cell
could sit through the first fifteen minutes and predict with 100%
accuracy who’s going to live and who’s going to die. This movie does not
have a plot, just a premise.
The premise is that a small quake in Arizona unleashes millions of
prehistoric carnivorous fish, just as thousands of teens and
twenty-somethings come in for Spring Break. Leaving aside the
implausibility of a Cancun-sized Spring Break gathering in
Middle-Of-Nowhere, Arizona, let’s just think about this premise. In one
location, we have untold hundreds of moronic, drunk, coked-up, horny,
half-to-fully naked sluts and douchebags, all gathered in one place to
get wet, wasted and laid. It’s not even a question of if they’ll get
killed off, but who’s going to be first.
The answer’s a shocker: None of them. It’s not the black cop either,
though he all but openly declares that he’s only got two days left until
retirement. It’s not even the two marine biologists who are stupider
and more careless than two educated professionals have any right to be.
Oh, they all die horribly, don’t get me wrong. They’re just not the
No, the first one to die in this movie is Richard Dreyfuss. Yes, you
read that right. Matt Hooper hisownself is turned to fish food in the
film’s prologue. What’s more, though his name isn’t given in the film,
the credits give his character’s name as Matt Hooper! And it doesn’t
stop with him. The standard old eccentric scientist who somehow knows
everything about the fishes? It’s Christopher Lloyd. And even if the
character is named Dr. Goodman, Lloyd is still quite clearly playing Dr.
Emmett Brown for the occasion. And for the more modern schlock fans, we
have Eli Roth making a cameo before he’s killed off in spectacular
Oh, the blood in this movie flows. The film starts out with a few
killings here and there (including a brief and pointless scene of some
guy getting chomped), but it isn’t until the spree at Spring Break that
the water really starts running red. This movie positively revels in how
it finds new and fresh ways to kill someone off, especially when it
uses 3D toward that end. Seriously, just use your own imagination to
think of how 3D could enhance the sight of grown people getting eaten by
dozens of tiny fish. Now multiply it by a couple hundred people mauled,
to the power of “totally fucked up,” and you’d be in the ballpark.
And of course, with blood in entertainment comes titties, its lovely
wife and business partner. The premise alone should clue you in to all
the excuses this movie finds for nudity and sexuality, but again, I can
guarantee that your imagination is only scratching the surface. Maybe
this will help: Imagine — if you will — two buxom, barely legal women,
totally nude, making out. While floating underwater. To classical
music. In 3D. That’s the kind of movie we’re dealing with here. But
don’t worry if you prefer men. There’s cock in here, too: It’s the
dismembered one floating toward the audience before it gets eaten by a
It should already be clear by this point just how the movie utilizes
3D. The piranhas themselves all but wink at the camera and things are
constantly flying out at the audience. In fact, one character actually
vomits into the camera. Seriously. These gimmick shots are only a couple
of seconds long each, but the gimmick is heavily utilized nonetheless.
Aside from that, what can I say? I don’t feel that I really need to
talk about the writing or the acting (why would anyone care?), though I
will say that all the actors do a decent enough job with what they’re
given. Honorary mentions to Brooklynn Proulx and Sage Ryan, the two
child actors who are both surprisingly good.
From the moment that a protagonist of Jaws is eaten by fishes
to the twist ending that sets up for a sequel against all odds and
logic, it’s patently obvious that Piranha 3D knows exactly what
it is. This movie was made purely for shock value and comedy, a parody
and homage to the gimmicky slasher exploitation films of yesteryear. If
you’re looking for horror, suspense and tension, keep looking. If you
want to see some nameless teenaged slut’s eyeball floating out at you,
go see this movie.
If you’re abhorred at the thought of a movie that exists only to show
off gruesome kills and naked nubiles… well, just shut up and don’t
see the movie. I won’t think any less of you, I promise.