Reviewed by: Brian C. Johnson
NUDITY—Why are humans supposed to wear clothes? Answer
How can I tell if I’m getting addicted to pornography or sex? Answer
How can I deal with temptations? Answer
Fish in the Bible
Death in the Bible
VIOLENCE—How does viewing violence in movies affect families? Answer
|Featuring:||Richard Dreyfuss (Matt Boyd), Ving Rhames (Deputy Fallon), Elisabeth Shue (Julie Forester), Christopher Lloyd (Mr. Goodman), Eli Roth (Wet T-Shirt Host), Jerry O'Connell (Derrick Jones), Steven R. McQueen (Jake Forester), Jessica Szohr (Kelly), See all »|
|Director:||Alexandre Aja—“The Hills Have Eyes”|
|Producer:||Atmosphere Entertainment MM, Chako Film Company, Dimension Films, Intellectual Properties Worldwide, The Weinstein Company, See all »|
|Distributor:||Dimension Films, The Weinstein Company|
“What do they really eat?”
Ahhh, everyone loves the comeback, right? We cheer when an athlete or movie star returns to the limelight after an injury or long absence! Ticket sales often go through the roof when the hero returns. [Remember when Muhammad Ali came back after a series of losses, or when an elder George Foreman graced the ring and beat the tar out of his younger opponent, even when Brett Favre un-retired… the first time?] Perhaps the studio execs wanted to capitalize on America’s fascination with the comeback when they green lighted the remake of “Piranha” (1978). Alas, “Piranha 3D” (2010) does not have the chops [pun intended] to find the former glory of its predecessor.
The original film was released on the heels of the uber-successful “Jaws” and was pushed along at the box office by smart taglines such as “Just when you thought it was safe to return to the water.” Unfortunately, for this contemporary version, the viewing public seems to be tiring of the lack of creativity in Hollywood and its fascination with the remake, as well as the endless [unnecessary] supply of 3D movies popping up all around.
Directed by Alexandre Aja (“Mirrors” (2008) and “The Hills Have Eyes” (2006), “Piranha 3D” stars Elizabeth Shue as Julie Forester, a single mom with three children who is also the sheriff of Lake Victoria, a popular tourist attraction. It just so happens to be Spring Break and the lake town is overrun by college coeds thirsty for the next alcohol-fueled party. The presence of so many eager students brings to town one Derrick Jones, host and director of “Wild, Wild, Wild!” (a reality DVD series similar to “Girls Gone Wild”). Jerry O’Connell (“Stand by Me,” “Kangaroo Jack”) mimics GGW creator, Joe Francis, in this role. The rowdy students cause enough problems for the limited staff in the sheriff’s department, but when an earthquakes unleashes thousands of hungry prehistoric fish on the unsuspecting revelers, there is definitely more than the law can handle.
Let’s just be frank here. “Piranha 3D” is not a family-friendly film, nor is it Christian-friendly by any stretch of the imagination. Excessive female frontal nudity, bad language, and gore galore are par for the course in this shlockfest. There is a brief moment where two Christian evangelists are trying unsuccessfully to witness to the party goers; their placards declaring “Read the Bible” and their cries to denounce the devil were easily drowned out by the deejay’s blaring music. The film seems to cheer on alcohol abuse and illicit sexuality. Even Sheriff Forester seems unfazed when she finds her teenage son viewing Internet pornography; in fact, Jake (Steven R. McQueen) chastises his mother for walking into his room and twice interrupting his activities. Julie seems to accept her son’s rebuke.
Unlike the original, this film lacks subtlety; nothing is left to the imagination. When his body had been virtually consumed from the waist down by the fish, Jones laments that his genitalia had been eaten off; moments later, we see his member floating in the water being consumed by one of the piranha.
In the original, the man-eaters were the result of a genetic experiment gone awry; the military had plans to use them as part of the Vietnam War strategy. In this iteration, an earthquake unlocks a prehistoric lake where the voracious critters have been cannibalizing each other for “millions of years.”
Films released in the 1970s continued the decades-old tradition of the B-movie; sadly, the 2010 throwback has far too much B for the Christian viewer: booze, bikinis, breasts, bare bottoms, and blood! The 3D technology is better than most recent attempts, but good cinematography alone cannot redeem this mess-of-a-film!
Violence: Extreme / Profanity: Extreme / Sex/Nudity: Extreme
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.