Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Film Review: Wrong Turn 3: Left for Dead (2009)

Review by: Chris Ward
Directed by: Declan O'brien Written by: Connor James Delaney (ScreenPlay) and Alan B. McElroy (Characters)
Released: October 2009

Bucking the trend of DTV franchises, 2007’s ‘Wrong Turn 2: Dead End’ was an exciting thrill-ride that outstripped its not-sure-if-its-serious-or-a-comedy predecessor. More mutants, more gore, characters that you routed for and Henry Rollins in an inspired bit of casting. You would think, then, that now a style for these movies has been established and it works, then part three would be an even bigger, bolder and better gorefest. As if they’d dare cock it up now...
After the now traditional opening gambit, where an insignificant group of eye candy youngsters get wasted (which is, to be honest, the best scene in the movie), we shift to the local prison where a group of high-risk prisoners are about to get transferred, and try breaking for freedom on the way. Stopping en route at the local sheriff’s office, the group then move on but their bus gets spotted by Three Fingers, the mutant cannibal, who rams them off the road. And so begins a desperate race for survival, as the prisoners battle not only Three Fingers, but also each other in a desperate bid to escape capture.

Doesn’t that sound exciting? On paper maybe, but when it’s on the screen, it becomes apparent that quality control wasn’t high on the agenda. Lacking the obvious passion for the genre that part two had in bucket loads, this entry in the series has the production values of the made-for-TV bilge that normally gets shown in the middle of weekday afternoons. The script is shamefully poor, the lines delivered by actors who obviously don’t know or care about the genre, or indeed the movie, they’re starring in, and the CGI makes ‘Mega Shark VS. Giant Octopus’ look like a contender for the best special effects Oscar. And this is before we even go into the utter absurdity of the situations the ‘characters’ (the term is used very loosely) find themselves in – let’s just say that if you ever find yourself with a seemingly dead mutant cannibal laying at your feet for about the third time in one evening, and you have a shotgun in your hand, it may be best just to err on the side of caution and blow his head off.
It isn’t all bad, though, as there are one or two moments that raise a smile. There’s a rather impressively bosomed young lady who gets one of Three Finger’s arrows right where it hurts, and a rather unfortunate young man who gets cheese-wired into three pieces, but two impressive kills just isn’t enough. With no big-name actors or cult personalities to speak of, a tedious lack of ideas and a list of plot implausibility’s that just make the movie more ridiculous as it goes on, it seems the standard set by part two has been put to one side in favour of just churning out crap that seems similar but lacks the substance. Avoid.


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