Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Horror Thoughts ‘12—Piranha DD (2012) *½

R, 83 min.
Director: John Gulager
Writers: Patrick Melton, Marcus Dunstan, Joel Soisson, Peter Goldfinger (characters), Josh Stolberg (characters)
Starring: Danielle Panabaker, Matt Bush, Katrina Bowden, Jean-Luc Bilodeau, David Koechner, Chris Zylka, David Hasselhoff, Christopher Lloyd, Gary Busey, Ving Rhames

“Piranha DD”, the sequel to the recent 3D reboot of the monster attack franchise, is not good. But then, like it’s predecessor, it’s not trying to be good. It’s exploitational, campy, gory, and downright silly. All of these things can be said about the 2010 version of “Piranha”. I’m pretty sure the original 1978 “Piranha” and its sequel would fit into that description as well. However, when you’re trying to be bad, sometimes it’s just bad.

Once again we find ourselves at another southwestern U.S. lake. Once more deadly prehistoric piranha have found their way through underground lakes to a party destination for young adults with hard bodies. Once again the filmmakers make every excuse they can to derobe the women. Once again we find several celebrity cameos from stars like Gary Busey, Ving Rhames, Christopher Lloyd, and David Hasslehoff, who careers have sadly led them to this stage. Hasselhoff is actually quite funny. I don’t know what the rest of those actors are doing here. Once again it all gets pretty bloody.

You’ve got to admire some of the elements that go into making this movie as bad as it can be. David Koechner is the proprietor of a water park, who has the rather brilliant idea of having an adults only section where the largest breasted and smallest waisted women can frolic topless to their hearts content. Or at least to the male water park employees’ content. There’s also a character who is violated by one of the deadly piranha in a way only the most twisted could find appealing. I think the screenwriters missed an opportunity to have the piranha treat her as the queen mother, ala Ripley in the third “Alien” movie.

For all the raunch and camp it can muster, however, this movie never quite achieves the fun levels of its predecessor. You can see all the mechanics at work. Other than Hasselhoff, the cameos only exist to provide cameos for actors you might’ve once recognized. The piranhas are never given any sort of a goal or personalities. Nor are most of the humans. And, there are some editing cuts and entire shots that make little or no logical sense to the story. I didn’t expect a good movie, but I should’ve gotten at least a good bad movie.

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