on August 21, 2010
Welcome to Spring Break at Lake Victoria! This year the college students have alot more to worry about than hangovers or STDs. A massive underwater earthquake opens up a mysterious chasm, releasing an ancient swarm of psychotic little fish. These little buggers are super hungry.
Let me just say that hot naked chicks make great fish food. This movie has a ridiculous amount of nudity and the most immaculate gore you'll likey ever see in 3-D! Seriously, these piranha can chomp through human flesh like a lawnmower through grass. Any appendages dipping into the water get instantly devoured down to the bone. Everywhere you look there are chunks of bloody arms, mangled legs, or human carcasses floating around. This has some gruesome effects that are great sick fun. Really it's an absurd, catastrophic mess.
To top off the awesome gore and plethora of topless women, we have a nice ensemble cast providing a good dose of comedy. Jerry O'Connell is especially hilarious as a sleazy porn director. Christopher Lloyd (Back to the Future) also does great. Elizabeth Shue, Ving Rhames, and several others lead the way. Eli Roth has a small role. Richard Dreyfuss even makes an appearance in a bit of a Jaws homage. Way too fun!
Director Alexandre Aja struck gold with this one. Piranha 3-D lives up to the hype and then some. It does have some minor flaws and/or cliched developments, but still it was the funnest time I've had in the theater in quite awhile. Don't miss it!
on August 25, 2010
Piranha 3D is a new film by Alexandre Aja, maker of the 2006 remake of the The Hills Have Eyes. Piranha 3D is unbelievably crude, gory and certainly not the best written film, but you know what? It's also a lot of fun. It's probably a better B movie than Quentin Tarantino's and Robert Rodriguez's Grind House (Death Proof and Planet Terror) of a few years ago.
Piranha 3D takes place over spring break in a picturesque lake town (the film was shot entirely on location in Lake Havisu). Inexplicably an underwater earth quake tears open a rift beneath the lake, revealing a deeper underwater lake (yes, that's probably redundant), which is home to prehistoric piranhas that have survived for millions of years. This setup is appropriately preposterous and we the viewers know the type of movie we're in for when the effect of the underwater quake creates a funnel that looks suspiciously like a toilet flushing. It's a super campy opening sequence that sets the tone for the rest of the film. What passes for the plot is hardly worth summarizing. Suffice it to say this unfortunate infestation by prehistoric pygocentrus nattereri is occurring when thousands of kids descend on the town for spring break. What follows is a series of gory dismemberments and naked frolics--in 3D!
Piranha 3D is a self aware send-up of the gore fests of the 70s and 80s like Jaws and the original Piranha. The stars are clearly having a lot fun with it, especially Jerry O'Connell as soft core porn producer, Derrick Jones, a send up of Girls Gone Wild impresario, Robert Francis, which is a nice segue way into the fact that this movie is a hard R. The fact that this wasn't NC-17 demonstrates the utter ridiculousness of the movie ratings system. Free Willy, this is not. There's as much T&A and probably more frontal nudity than one might see in Girls Gone Wild (alas I've never had the pleasure of seeing any of Mr. Francis' direct to DVD masterpieces). There's an underwater naked ballet featuring Kelly Brook and Riley Steele that goes on for damn near 5 minutes. It's awkward, but hilarious because of it, especially when you realize that they've been underwater long enough to have drowned halfway through the sequence.
Then there is the gore. "Over the top" does not even begin to describe it. Unlike movies like Hostel, which have been described as torture porn, Piranha 3D is so gory and self aware that its portrayal of aquatic violence is comedic. When I saw this movie opening night the audience laughed a lot in a good way. The 3D effects merely accentuated the film's crude humor and its ubiquitous gore. One of the members of the cast meets a particularly ignoble end in what is probably a 3D first, which I won't spoil for you here.
All in all, Piranha 3D is a rousing success at recreating a B-movie. The 3D is surprisingly well done and greatly adds to the over the top feel of the film. This is, however, not great cinema, but that's not the point. See this movie with people that appreciate schlocky horror movies and who have a good sense of humor. Don't see it with your parents and for heaven's sake don't take little children to see it. It is offensive, and it is crude and it is a lot of fun when viewed for what it is, which is a campy send up of the genre.
FTC Advisory: I purchased my own tickets.
on August 29, 2010
Piranha 3D is a remake of the 1978 original film Piranha which was itself a parody of the classic film Jaws. The film was made by French producer Alexandre Aja best known for his remake of The Hills Have Eyes. You might be asking yourself: now why would Piranhas come out of seemingly nowhere and kill people? The storyline provides the answer: 1) There is a lake under a lake in which Piranhas have survived by eating their own kind in order to survive in this prehistoric lake and when an earthquake hits the Piranhas break loose 2) This is a "horror" movie (I'd say it's more of a horror-comedy), it doesn't have to actually make sense in order to enjoy. This is a remake of a movie that was really a parody of Jaws, let's put it that way.
I'd say a fun aspect of the film is how it's not that well-written but it makes for a fun B movie. One advantage the movie has is acting, except some characters that were rather goofy the acting in Piranha 3D is pretty good considering how this is a horror movie. The main characters especially were portrayed by good actors in which we actually do see a development to the point that we do care if they survive. The humor of the movie is similar to that of teen aimed movies such as American Pie and Sex Drive, not necessarily a bad thing unless you would consider that sort of humor juvenile. For instance about the humor, watching a penis eaten by piranhas with the 3D effect can only be funny or tasteless, you decide! Now the 3D effect worked very well to a certain degree I'm not sure how well it worked because I have not seen much 3D movies as of yet. Yet there were some pretty good effects and some good thrills resulted out of it. The Piranhas looked amazing and the death scenes (of which there are many) were done in an excellent gory way and looked like an actual death suffered due to Piranhas, it was convincing and not over-exaggerated like you might think it would be. A low point would be the ending as it's a big thrill but ends perhaps too suddenly and surprisingly (maybe a Piranha 3D 3 is in the works? Yes Dimension Films has announced that due to the success earned on the opening weekend by grossing over 10 millions there will be a sequel).
Was I disappointed with Piranha? Not really as I knew what to expect (even though some things were unexpected) and knew what kind of movie I was going into. Should you expect high quality from this movie? The answer is no but you should expect to have some fun watching it, especially with friends. Who would I recommend Piranha 3D to? To those who are looking for a fun mindless movie on a boring night, it's entertaining to say the least. One thing is sure if you think the movie misses the target it achieved (whatever it is) it misses in an amusing way. 3 stars out of 5, flawed but fun in the way that you enjoy a good B movie.
on August 20, 2010
Back when James Cameron's "Avatar" was released, there was a lot of talk about the future of 3-D movies - about how much better the process had become with high definition cameras, about how they didn't simply throw things at the screen but actually immersed you in another world. In March of 2009, Josh Quittner of "Time" published an article about the 3-D revolution, particularly in relation to "Avatar," which had yet to be released. After seeing some finished footage, he concluded that the work was so absorbing and detailed that he awoke the following morning with the peculiar sensation of wanting to return to Pandora, as if it were real. "Cameron wasn't surprised," he wrote. "One theory, he says, is that 3-D viewing `is so close to a real experience that it actually triggers memory creation in a way that 2-D viewing doesn't.' His own theory is that stereoscopic viewing uses more neurons."
Given what was said at the time, what would Quittner say now about movies like "Piranha 3-D," a remake of Joe Dante's 1978 film? Hell, what would Cameron say, given that 1981's "Piranha II: The Spawning" was his directorial debut? Would there be any mention of triggering memory creations or neurons or wanting to return to anything? I have my doubts. They might, however, have a thing or two to say about a shot late in the film of two piranhas fighting over a severed penis, the victor eventually spitting out the half-eaten remains directly at the screen. The audience I sat with had plenty to say, although not in words so much as in loud outbursts of disgust and laughter; I clearly heard a guy a few rows behind me say, "Dude, ugh, dude!" This is the future of 3-D, folks. Cameron and Quittner should be proud.
I'm going out on a limb here, but "Piranha 3-D" is about as good as a film called "Piranha 3-D" can possibly be. It's a no-holds-barred celebration of campy horror - bloody, brainless, and bawdy. It cheerfully assaults the senses and spits in the face of decency, not merely with scene after scene of relentless gore, but also with its exploitation of female anatomy, specifically breasts. Oh boy, but there are a lot of breasts in this movie, aided in no small part by real life adult actress Riley Steele and "Playboy" model Kelly Brooke. Director Alexandre Aja might as well have called it "Piranhas and Boobs 3-D."
Now that I have your attention, shall we get to the plot? In the sleepy little town of Lake Victoria, seismic activity ruptures the lakebed and unleashes thousands of carnivorous prehistoric piranhas from an underwater chasm. They swim to the shores of Lake Victoria, where hordes of loud, drunken, horny teenage tourists are in the thick of Spring Break tomfoolery. The local sheriff, Julie Forester (Elisabeth Shue), and her deputy, Fallon (Ving Rhames), try to solve the mystery of how a half-eaten body washed up on shore; they join forces with a specially trained underwater research team, and as you can probably guess, the divers will not like what they find when they reach the chasm. Meanwhile, Julie's teenage son, Jake (Steven R. McQueen), is drawn into the world of Derrick Jones (Jerry O'Connell), a sleazoid Joe Francis parody filming his newest porn movie on a boat.
Julie manages to bring a live piranha to Mr. Goodman (Christopher Lloyd), the eccentric fish store owner and convenient piranha expert. This particular species, he claims, was supposed to have gone extinct millions of years ago; apparently, the ones that escaped the chasm kept themselves alive by feeding on themselves. Okay, I'll give him that one; we know that cannibalistic species can successfully procreate. But what about the fact that they have emerged from complete darkness and extreme pressure, meaning they would not be able to adapt to the light or to the shallow waters, meaning they wouldn't be able to reach the human flesh they so hunger for? Evolution has taught us that, in all likelihood, these fish wouldn't even have eyes.
But what a minute. Why am I applying logic to this film? It's not about scientific accuracy. It's about people being eaten alive. It's about severed limbs floating in the water. It's about moments of blood-soaked absurdity, like when a girl gets her hair caught in the propeller blades of a boat, pulling her scalp and face clean off her skull. It's about naked girls repeatedly shaking their chests. I wish it wasn't about severed penises and the fish that enjoy eating them, but I guess you have to take the good with the bad. I can't bring myself to say that "Piranha 3-D" is a good film, but it certainly achieves exactly what it wanted to achieve. You will laugh. You will scream. You will cringe. Assuming you're a straight male, you will be aroused for much of the time. It's sordid fun. All the same, I can't help but wonder if James Cameron, who revolutionized the 3-D experience, isn't somewhere right now sulking in shame.
on March 7, 2011
Ok some background first. I own a Panasonic 54VT25 plasma and a Panasonic 3D blu-ray player. I have seen so far open-season 3D, avatar 3D, Deep sea 3D, cloudy with a chance of meatballs 3D, despicable me 3D, Alice in wonder land 3D that are here listed in order regarding 3D quality with a lot of them being at the same level. I, like many others, even if not a huge fan of horror movies bought this blu-ray for the 3D content. It is such a disappointment, I cannot understand how some people and even blu-ray.com comment on the 3D content saying that the quality is good considering that the 3D was added after the fact during post processing. The 3D is so bad, I couldn't believe my eyes, the movie it self is already really bad, but the 3D .... Between the almost non-stop blurry image + ghosting and parallax poblems + some wired effects (leading to wired deformation of heads or hairs in their depth for example) that I don't even have the word to describe. Even if I hated seeing literally 10th of people getting killed and swimming in what can be described as a blood bath, I guess some people will certainly like it .... But if you are looking at a good 3D movie for your HDTV stay away from this one. You will notice that the first 5-10 minutes of the film are probably the worst in term of 3D quality. It is a miracle I didn't get a headache before the end. I obviously do not recommend this 3D movie. I'm not even sure I can recommend the 2D version, as others already said; you'll have to love a no plot, full of blood and boobs kind of movie to enjoy this one.
I saw the original Piranha years ago and thought it was a terrible movie (but in a good way). So bad, it had to be remade for the current generation, and it fits perfectly with the idea of a 3D movie.
I bought the Piranha [Blu-ray] earlier this year (not expecting to get a 3DTV) and really enjoyed it.. After getting a 3DTV, I picked up this (3D) version.
You'll notice a lot of mixed reviews -- most seem to think the 3D was very well done, others complain of issues. At the time, I figured those complaining were just being picky about it, and took the chance -- that was a mistake.
The movie itself is very fun/campy and enjoyable in 2D or 3D. The problem comes with the 3D -- to start, it was a converted movie (filmed in 2D, converted to 3D). One of the biggest problems is ghosting.
Everything seems divided into layers (sort of like cardboard cutouts) - sometimes this works great, but most of the time you have issues where stuff isn't on the right layer. Most obvious/distracting is when a persons face is coming out towards you, but the top of their head or side of their face is stuck in the background (in what looks like several feet behind their head) - this happens with hair throughout (a girls curly hair might be 3D while some strands are several feet behind her mixed in with the background), or when they show part of the boat that's supposed to be in 3D, but part of the ocean behind it is also in 3D.
The 3D levels seem to mix throughout - sometimes you'll see many "layers" of 3D (foreground, middle ground, background, far away background), other times it seems like there are just 2 layers (foreground for the main subject and everything else (regardless of distance) is in the background).
It came off as very distracting to me. Fortunately, there were some fun 3D moments that worked great. Of the 10 3D movies I've seen, this was unfortunately the poorest one in terms of 3D effect. It could be due to it being a "cheesy B-Movie" or from the conversion of 2D -> 3D, but it seemed pretty poor at times.
The 3D version does contain a 2D version of the movie.. but you lose some deleted scenes (on the 2D version) which I found to be pretty good. Since both can be found for around the same price sometimes, it's up to you whether you'd rather have the 3D version of the deleted scenes.
Despite the 3D being somewhat poor in most parts, I think the 3D version is better than having the deleted scenes (if you plan to get a 3DTV). I wouldn't recommend re-buying it or paying much more for it over the 2D version though.
Movie = 4
3D = 3
on August 20, 2010
If you see this movie with the right crowd, you'll probably leave the theater thinking you've just witnessed the best thing ever put to film. If you pay $8.00 to view something called Piranha 3-D, I'm sure you know better than to expect anything more than a cheesy horror delight. This takes Snakes on a Plane to a whole new level. There is no getting around the fact that Piranha 3-D delivers everything you could possibly want in a carnivorous fish movie. Way more so than the late 70's original is a understatement. In a little under 90 minutes you get huge doses of nudity and some extremely sick and well done gore effects. The story is as simple as an earthquake waking up thousands of piranhas who have been feeding off each other in an underwater cavern for millions of years. They swim up through the crack in the earth and find themselves in the middle of spring break. Whoa, deep huh? To be fair, the acting is way better than what you would expect. The main kid wasn't annoying and Jerry O'Connell turned in a crazy performance, while Elisabeth Shue, Ving Rhames, and Adam Scott made the silliness believable by at least trying to act serious. Did I mention there are fun cameos by both Richard Dreyfuss and Christopher Lloyd? Dreyfuss even sings "Show Me the Way to Go Home" from Jaws and seems to be wearing the same outfit.
The CGI fish looked good and the use of pratical make-up FX really did this film wonders. The carnage during the main attack has to be seen to be believed. The director, Alexandre Aja, says there are around 6 minutes or so that were cut to get this an R rating. I will be looking forward to the Director's Cut on Blu-ray.
This is the first 3-D film that I've seen done after the fact (I know it was shot with the format in mind) that manages to look okay. You don't really feel the depth of being in the movie like with Avatar and How to Train Your Dragon. It mostly relies on vomit, ugly fish, or body parts flying at you, but it didn't hurt my eyes or look too blurry.
I'm really surprised that most critics are taking a liking to it, but I guess even they can't resist pretty girls being torn to pieces by B movie creatures. Either that or they just enjoyed the decapitation of Eli Roth.
Piranha 3-D, released in 2010, is the bombdiggity. I feel that anything with Elisabeth Shue in it must be the bombdiggity. Hollow Man, for instance, is the bombdiggity (okay, not really). Piranha 3-D not only is a raucous horror comedy, it's also a badass animal attack film. It's ideal for those midnight screenings that you put on for your beer-guzzling homies on Friday nights because you can't get a date.
As spring breakers descend for their annual romp on the 25 square miles that is Lake Victoria, Arizona, a seismic tremor beneath the lake lets loose a marauding swarm of prehistoric piranhas. Suddenly, testy small-town sheriff Julie Forester (Shue) has all she can handle as she scrambles to save hordes of oblivious revelers. It wouldn't do to wreck the town's most lucrative tourist trap.
The camera splits time between the harried sheriff and her own teenaged son Jake (Steven R. McQueen). Jake is one of them kids that always hangs in the periphery, not quite cool enough to be in the school's power cliques. He's nursing one of them unrequited crushes on super-cute Kelly (Jessica Szohr), and a B.M.O.C. frisson must've coursed thru him when he's hired as location scout for a skeevy Girls Gone Wild-type filmmaker (Jerry O'Connell). And cool points for Jake because here's Kelly now, suddenly an invited guest on board the filmmaker's boat.
For some reason (maybe charity?), this movie is populated by recognizable names. Richard Dreyfuss, Christopher Lloyd, Eli Roth, Dina Meyer, and Ving Rhames all participate, some more significantly than others. Maybe Dreyfuss was tricked into thinking he was signing on for Jaws 5. Rest in peace, Richard Dreyfuss, rest in peace. Here comes the required sciency 'splanation as only Christopher Lloyd, furiously channeling his best Dr. Emmett Brown, can deliver. He's the local ichthyologist who briefs the baffled sheriff that what she's dealing with is a particularly ancient strain of piranha what vanished off the face of the earth over 2 million years ago right before the Pliocene Epoch. To bolster the scientific ranks, a staff of seismologists enter the fray, figure out that there's a subterranean lake under Lake Victoria, and then two of the three promptly get chewed up. The one intact seismologist transforms into action hero seismologist. He's crafty at steering motor boats.
Elisabeth Shue is onscreen and looking good and so this was never gonna be a lost cause. But it turns out that Piranha 3-D is tons of fun, anyway. It's campy and absurd and there's hammy acting, and there's sure no dearth of gratuitous nudity and excessive carnage. Jerry O'Connell seems to be having the time of his life playing the repulsive jackhat. There may have been a danger of desensitization, except that there are too many novel and deliciously gruesome piranha attacks. It's impressive, son, and the bodycount is staggering. Standout kills include some random chick whose hair gets entangled in a motorboat's blades and, also, this other poor chick and, in what must've been a seminal 3-D moment, what happens to her gaping mouth. Even the survivors who emerge from the water look seriously messed up.
Also, wet t-shirt contest in 3-D.
The ones to root for are Shue, the cute girl Kelly, and Jake's younger sister. I can't stand Jake the human doormat, and I longed for his aggravating younger brother to violently end up as bloody chum in the water. Cast and crew have no delusions about the kind of film they shot. Pretentious art house material, this ain't. The film wants you to have a good time. It rolls out plenty of awesome W.T.F. moments. In the annals of horror cinema, Piranha 3-D goes down as an unapologetic, super-gory, tongue-in-cheek cult classic. It's a hell of a good time and best enjoyed if you're in the company of your not quite sober pals. And what do you mean Richard Dreyfuss isn't dead?
*Please rate if helpful*
Why did i buy?:
I bought this movie when i first purchased my new 3d tv. Obviously because the tv was so much, i didn't have a lot of left over money to be spending so i looked for a cheap 3d blu ray. I picked this one up for $8 and it was a good initial 3d experience.
Not very good, basically this guy meets a porn producer and goes on a ship and looks at hot chicks and then they die.
Surprisingly, Piranha 3D is somewhat unique in terms of how it became a 3D title. Rather than shoot natively in 3D, Director Alexandre Aja chose to shoot in 2D with a 3D conversion during post production in mind, his every shot looking towards the conversion process and ensuring that the eventual 3D image would be of a high quality meeting his standards. No, Piranha doesn't compare to Avatar but it's still a great test of your 3D tube.
Piranha's DTS-HD MA 5.1 lossless soundtrack is as aggressive as its bad guys, and rarely is the track not jumping with some sort of robust sonic activity. The track handles water elements quite well; whether the calmer flowing of water as heard during surface shots that allows the liquid to spread all through the soundstage or the heavy pressure of underwater segments that come with an immersive sense of depth through seamless surround usage and bass, Sony's lossless track does right by one of the film's most critical elements.
This is a great movie to watch with some of your buddies. Girls wont appreciate it but guys will. If they made this into a better plot, it would be a great movie.
on February 6, 2015
This movie is an enjoyable gore-fest from start to finish. If you're going in expecting a well thought out, intelligent horror movie then you're just wasting your time. This is a pure and simple popcorn flick, an homage to the cheesiness of the 70's and 80's. Yes the FX on the fish are terrible for the most part but once again fans wouldn't have it any other way. The acting is passable nobody is hamming it up just because they can, the gore is actually very well done, and of course there are copious amounts of sustained nudity. So if you have an hour and a half to kill and are just looking for something fun to watch, pop this in.