They say that 3D is the future of cinema. 3D will take us right into the picture, dazzle us in ways we never thought possible. When that Australian dude — who seems to be in everything these days — first stepped amongst the verdant valleys and floating peaks of Pandora, who amongst us did not hold their breath in childlike wonder?
Staggered by the enormity of Cameron’s vision, who amongst us did not stroke their chin in quiet contemplation of 3D’s potentially limitless applications, and think, “I wonder what a big pair of wobbly boobs would look like in 3D?”
Luckily, French director Alexandre Aja thought this too. He seems big on remakes, with The Hills Have Eyes, and now this to his credits. I think that one with the mirrors, and Kiefer Sutherland was a remake as well. But nobody saw that, so who cares?
This gory boobathon (booby gorathon?) opens with a rather cool wink to Jaws. Glancing at the cast list before watching the film should give you a pretty good idea of what the wink entails. After that, it’s business as usual, the pace slowing as we’re introduced to the principal stars, set against the backdrop of what Americans call “Spring Break”. This seems to be pretty much hot babes dancing around on top of boats to rubbish music, whilst chugging on booze, and being sprayed with water jets by Eli Roth for wet t-shirt competitions.
Of course, they’re all having a good time. And of course, as we all know, unchecked enthusiasm for sex, dancing, beer, and other naughty things is a big no-no in a horror movie. It leads to only one thing. A horrifying, and brutal death. You’d think these wanton teenagers would learn, possibly by some form of fast track evolution, and body swerve things like Spring Break, Halloween, Prom Night etc. Just stay at home. Get wrapped up in a big blanket with a mug of hot chocolate. Don’t even think of answering that phone, or doing any babysitting.
Hot babes never learn
But no. Hot babes never learn. And sure enough, the piranhas attack in what is one of the most sustained, gore drenched set pieces in recent memory. The piranhas really go to town, filling their bellies fit to bust on an “All You Can Eat Hot Babe Buffet”. In the ensuing panic, heads are cracked open, and bodies chopped up in speedboat propellers. Amongst other things. If you can imagine the horror, chances are Alexandre Aja is ahead of you, taking it one step further than you thought possible.
Outside of the carnage, the movie fares less well. Kelly Brook, and porn star Riley Steele, have an extensive nude skinny dip, pirouetting deep down in the crystal clear waters, which gets no complaints from me. But they weren’t picked for their acting skills, that’s for sure. They give hardly any lines to Riley, who’s oddly mute throughout most of the movie.
The real actors — Shue, Rhames etc. — do the best they can with what little they’re given. They’re there to scratch their puzzled heads at the first fleeting signs of something being not quite right, before shifting into action gear, scooting around in boats, or unloading shotguns into the water at their fishy foes. Jerry O’ Connell has the best time of it, and more or less steals the film as the obnoxious (but funny) producer of a show called Girls Gone Wild.
But in an effort to pack the film with as many babes and as much blood as possible, the story is left wanting. Rather than wrapping things up properly, the ending appears suddenly, obviously with an eye on the sequel which could quite comfortably pick up straight where the first movie leaves off.
The 3D is gimmicky, but because of the eighties horrors it draws most of its inspiration from, it’s a perfect fit. One particular use of 3D towards the end borders on genius, it’s so unexpected. However, gimmicky or not, to want to make a film with big, wobbly 3D boobs. Is there anything more noble?
Probably. Can’t think of it at the moment though.