There are camp films and there are crap films.
is a crap film.
The inevitable spin-off of the unexpectedly successful and unexpectedly entertaining Piranha 3-D, Piranha 3DD
is an inferior film in every way to its campier, more creative and more inspired predecessor.
Alexandre Aja's original film was far from a masterpiece, but one had to admire Aja's almost gleeful approach to the graphic violence and the film's tongue-in-cheek humor that served as a constant companion to the gore. Unfortunately, Aja is gone for the sequel and replaced by Project Greenlight winner John Gulager (Feast),
who somehow manages to have become a worse director while being given more money to work with in production. Piranha 3DD
possesses practically none of the fun that made Piranha 3-D
a guilty pleasure, a gory horror/comedy with an absolute awareness of what it was and what it wasn't. This film features the same concept transplanted to an Arizona water park owned by a sleazeball (David Koechner), whose ideas for managing the park once owned by his ex-wife include water-certified strippers as lifeguards, an adult pool complete with condoms, alcohol and, yes, an underwater "cooch cam" and, most ill-advised of all, the piping in of water from a bootleg well that mines a deep underground cavern.
I suppose you can figure out from here where this is going.
You can. Can't you?
Um. Think about it. "DD."
Need I say more?
While lots of breasts, penises and butts got munched (I'll confess that was fun to write) in the first Piranha
film, in this version the ferocity is even more intense and the butt-munching even more graphic. Heck, there's even a particularly idiotic piranha IN vagina meets penis shot. Seriously. Somehow, a film that was low-budget the first-time around manages to look even cheaper the second time around. While Piranha 3DD
is in 3-D, the film is so ineptly made that you sort of picture the fine folks at Dimension Films sitting around at the post-production screening going "Well, there's always VOD."
Indeed, the film's claim to fame, if it has one, is that Piranha 3DD
is being simultaneously released in a handful of theaters and through VOD outlets. Had this film not had a successful predecessor, there's no way it would have been anything but straight-to-video and another nail in the coffin of the directorial career of John Gulager, who has yet to make a film that rises above anything resembling mediocrity.
Koechner, who has proven in the past that he certainly can be funny, is mostly sleazy here as the water park owner and father to Maddie (Danielle Panabaker), his daughter and the park's co-owner who clearly disapproves of her father's choices. It's difficult to understand why talented actors Ving Rhames and Christopher Lloyd agreed to be in this flick (I know. I know. Money.), but the younger actors could learn a thing or two from them as they at least nail the film's tone perfectly and make their time on screen watchable. The film also features gratuitous cameos from the likes of Gary Busey being Gary Busey and, in a more extended cameo, David Hasselhoff being David Hasselhoff. On the other hand, stick around through the credits and check out Hasselhoff's singing of the film's closing tune - While it's not brilliantly entertaining, it's the most entertaining thing in the film.
If you're still not sure what to expect from the film, simply watch the trailer above this review and imagine yourself watching it for 83 minutes. If that works for you, then by all means go check out the film. However, even for this film critic who hasn't gotten laid since I can't remember when, 83 minutes of these breasts was about 78 minutes too long.
© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic