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Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Dis List: Wrong Turn 5 (2012) review



Doug Bradley (Maynard Odets), Camilla Arfwedson (Angela Carter), Simon Ginty (Billy), Roxanne McKee (Lita), Paul Luebke (Gus), Oliver Hoare (Julian), Amy Lennox (Cruz), Radaslov Parvanov (One Eye), George Karlukovski (Saw Tooth), Borislav Iliev (Three Finger)

Directed by Declan O'Brien

The Short Version: This unbelievably stupid slasher movie is apparently set in some alternate universe where a towns population inexplicably vanishes, nobody owns a PC and hillbilly cannibals can easily break into power companies knowing exactly where to go to destroy the electrical grids. These are just some of this films numerous logic and script malfunctions. Alternating between juvenility and mean-spiritedness, the excessive sex and gore will appease some and others will wish they'd spent their money on something else. The main cast is made up of European actors who do a fabulous job with American accents. Doug Bradley does his best Jigsaw impression in this Bulgaria(?!) shot shit flick.

A group of college students head for Fairlake, West Virginia. Fairlake also hosts the annual Halloween Mountain Man Music festival, now in its tenth year. The visiting collegians run afoul of Maynard, the patriarch of a group of mutant cannibalistic hillbillies. The police arrive and arrest Maynard and the visiting students. Meanwhile, the inbred, flesh-eating retards show their resourcefulness by knocking out both the electricity and a cell tower on their way to break their dad out of jail.

The WRONG TURN franchise is proving to be a bastion for cinematic negligence that shows because your movie has a '5' in its title, the need to deliver a cohesive, or, dare I say GOOD movie, is not a priority. Declan O'Brien, who has been the demented driver behind the wheel of the last two WRONG TURNs, again aims for the gore crowd with his third stab at this series that has cannibalized what made the first film such a tense, and welcome throwback to rough n' rowdy 80s horror.

WRONG TURN was a nice surprise that was more or less dumped into theaters with little to no fanfare by 20th Century Fox. It did reasonably well for a film that seemed to be an embarrassment to its distributor. After being a hit on video, sequels came a' knockin'. The first sequel showed signs of ineptitude that would only mutate further with part 3. Part 4 I didn't see, but was supposed to be a prequel. Now with part 5 (which pretends parts 1 through 3 do not exist), they don't even shoot the damn thing in West Virginia. It's Bulgaria! And the cast are all Europeans doing American accents? Speaking of location, it turns out part three was also shot in Bulgaria and part four in Canada. So much for local flavor.

Probably the only good thing I can say about WRONG TURN 5 is that HELLRAISER fans will delight in Doug Bradley appearing in this mess; yet it becomes immediately apparent from the first five minutes that he's little more than a redneck Pinhead (minus the pins and black leather) who's seemingly a great admirer of Jigsaw from the SAW series. He spends most of the running time in a jail cell casually spouting off lines like, "You won't live that long", "You're dead", and "One more dead body to add to the pile."

The movie actually starts off with a sweeping aerial shot (although this may be lifted from the first movie), but quickly falls apart right after that. The group of young kids are supposed to be attending this Halloween "Mountain Man Music Festival", yet it's the most anemically attended gathering I've ever seen. Thirty minutes into the film and it looks like the whole town has suddenly become deserted. There's some concert going on just outside of town, but aside from a couple of kids, there's nobody in sight save for the main cast.

Angela Carter, the town sheriff, runs her office like it's Mayberry, NC; and this includes a town drunk who can come and go as he pleases. After she arrests the main villain, his three sons go looking for him. Since it's Halloween, they fit in fine with the couple of "crowd" scenes we get although the actors playing the deformed crazies look like they're wearing masks anyways. 

Somehow or other, these three inbred savages (one of them being series mainstay, Three Fingers, here looking like a STAR TREK alien and laughing constantly) manage to break into the local power company (where the hell is the guard station?!) and shut off the electricity as well as bring down a cell tower (supposedly there's just the one tower for miles and everybody has the same cell provider); not that anybody is seen trying to use them, anyways. Apparently no one owns a PC to communicate with the outside world, either.

Why doesn't anybody in town hear all the screaming, killing in the streets, or buildings blowing up?! This movie has the laziest, lousiest script of recent memory. The filmmakers compensate for the rampant stupidity by overloading their movie with a glut of creative, if exaggerated practical gore effects, and three softcore porn sex scenes that are there just for the hell of it. Throwing body parts and boobs at the screen is a nice diversion, but it doesn't make a good movie.

The death scenes, as spectacularly nasty as they are, tend to be a bit on the cartoonish side when they're not operating on a cut rate SAW-like level. Would a woman actually remain alive long enough to munch on her intestines after Three Fingers pulls them out and feeds them to her?! The cannibals often go to an awful lot of trouble to kill the cast, too. Where the hell did they find the Combine Harvesting Thresher? They seem to have pulled it out of their ass. These are the most resourceful backwoods cannibal retards I've ever seen.

Judging by the extras on the DVD, it seems everybody had a ball making this thing, yet it doesn't translate that way to the finished product. The gore is extreme, often unnecessarily mean spirited at times. The film has this whole childish, immature aura about it, which makes some of the violence more uncomfortable than it probably would have been otherwise.

Sadly, it appears likely this crummy series is going to continue with no end to the frat boy mentality the franchise quickly sank to. Aside from one or two moments of competency, you're possibly making a WRONG choice by picking WRONG TURN 5 as a purchase, or even a rental for that matter. A better choice would be to revisit the first movie, or even the decent, if goofy first sequel.

This review is representative of the Fox DVD.


Kaijinu said...

Well, you pretty much can see where this is going for me. I saw this, and i think it's a dumb, silly movie...and I like it. Not as thrilling as the first or the second, but good if you're the kind of guy who goes for gore.

I'm partially one of those guys, so, I gave it three out of 5 in my head.

venoms5 said...

I found it to be outright laziness that the filmmakers couldn't be bothered to come up with a more plausible movie. The first is the best to me. The second is good, too, but it shows signs of where the series is going.

The director says in an interview on the DVD that he wanted to tap into Peter Jackson's DEAD ALIVE with WT5. I don't think he succeeded. I skipped part 4 and doubt I will bother since he directed that one, too.

Maynard Morrissey said...

The director is an untalented douchebag who will never be able to direct something in the vein of BRAINDEAD. That said, I thought WT5 was the best of O'Brien's sequels. The Kills are fun, Doug Bradley is cool as ever and the soundtrack rocked a lot. Still, the Wrong Turn madness really has to stop now. There's no point in creating more Bulgarian rubbish

venoms5 said...

I'm almost terrified of renting part 4, Harry. Three was the pits. Yeah, I hope they stop it now, or at least get somebody who can treat the material with the same level of seriousness of the first movie.

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