Tag Archives: Piranha 3D

Piranha 3-D

Ravenous piranhas with razor-sharp teeth terrorize Lake Havasu vacationers in director Alexandre Aja’s 3-D remake of Joe Dante’s campy 1978 horror film, itself a satire of Steven Spielberg’s Jaws. When an earthquake tears open the bottom of Lake Havasu, schools of carnivorous piranhas are released from their underwater lair, and the lake turns into a bloody, frenzied death trap for unwitting water-goers.

Rating: 2 out of 10

I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall during the script writing session for this film. I can just imagine a group of talentless hacks smiling and patting each other on the back after coming up with the brilliant scene of having piranha eat the genitalia off of a character and have the audience watch said genitalia float to the bottom of the river where two of the fish fight over what’s left of it……in 3-D!!!

Piranha 3-D is my pick so far for worst film of the year. It’s a completely brainless, boring, unfunny, and unscary attempt to cash in on the current fad of 3D movies adapted from old horror films. It’s 1 hour and 29 minutes and I’m not kidding when I say at least 45 minutes is dedicated to college kids on spring break being drunk and annoying. Normally this would irritate me enough to cheer whenever the killer shows up. In this case, the killer is CG fish and I didn’t give a shit about the characters being alive, dead, or out to lunch. This film gives them nothing to do that’s remotely interesting. They don’t even die interestingly!! Piranha show up and basically you just see mass chaos underwater followed by screaming and pools of blood. Zzzzzzz!!! Shit, almost fell asleep there. Let me finish this review before I pass out.

The quality of 3D is probably your next question since the only thing left is the novelty of that format. I’ll admit I love cheesy movies in 3D when they overuse the “pop out at you” gimmick but this film rarely does it and the effect just doesn’t immerse you any more than normal. I think the 3D fad, much like killer creatures in the water, has run its course.

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When flesh-eating piranhas are accidentally released into a summer resort’s rivers, the guests become their next meal in this 1978 horror cheese fest. With the opening of Pirhana 3-D, we thought we’d take a look back in the archives at this camp/horror classic.

Rating: 7 out of 10

Good old Roger Corman. You could always count on him to cash in on a cinematic trend here and there.  When “Piranha,” an obvious spoof of Jaws, was released in 1978, the B grade campiness of the film did not deter it from finding a large audience. Moviegoers reveled in this cheesy, tongue-in-cheek fare. Suprisingly, this low budget film, directed strongly by Joe Dante (The Howling, Gremlins and Innerspace) actually works with a neat drive- in movie charm. It’s fun, scary and not gore-filled.

The stiff but appropriate Bradford Dillman plays Paul, a man of the woods type who hesitantly pairs up with Maggie, played by Heather Menzies to investigate the disappearance of some unwary hikers. The film, with it’s movie of the week plot, unfolds evenly into more of a comedy than a horror film as our duo uncover a secret military operation involving mutated killer fish with nasty results. Dante regular Kevin McCarthy (Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Innerspace) stars as a left-behind doctor who has been the protector of the piranha. His fevered performance is one of the highlights of the film.

The flesh-eating fish are let loose upon on unsuspecting swimmers with a dire, even more scarier proposition than Spielberg’s great white shark. There are MANY of these tiny, swimming killers with uber-razor sharp teeth and they are hungry! Now, I have seen enough National Geographic specials on Amazonian killer fish to know that this is a very unprobable premise but Dante pulls off the plausibility with such aplomb that one cannot help but enjoy it all. The mid section does drag a bit and the film does have a dated air about it, but I am definitely recommending it. Wish I owned a drive-in theater because I’d include this campy classic to the schedule!