Numbingly Stupid ‘Piranha 3DD’ is BaDD

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Average: 4 (1 vote) Oscarman rating: 0.5/5.0
Rating: 0.5/5.0

CHICAGO – “Piranha 3D” was a flawed film to be certain but it looks like a horror/comedy masterpiece compared to the dull mess that is the virtually straight-to-DVD follow-up, “Piranha 3DD,” opening on a whopping 75 screens today and also available On Demand. The effects are significantly worse, the tone is less consistent, and the sense of gorey fun that made the first movie a silly blood-soaked ride has been replaced by a movie that barely registers at all. Not scary, not funny, not clever, “Piranha 3DD” is just a waste of time.

People seem to think that movies with extreme gore and nudity are easy to pull off. Watch Alexandre Aja’s 2010 gore-stravaganza and then follow it up with John Gulager’s brain-dead virtual remake in “Piranha 3DD” and spot the differences. As I wrote about Aja’s film. “It’s far-from-perfect and could have been with a few tweaks but “Piranha 3D” is off-the-rails crazy in all the ways that someone buying a ticket to a three-dimensional gore-o-rama wants what’s presented to them to be off-the-rails crazy.

Piranha 3DD
Piranha 3DD
Photo credit: Dimension Films

The producers of “Piranha 3DD” seem to think that more of the same is all audiences want out of a sequel and that an increase in body parts, bad jokes, and faded star cameos will suffice for a completely lack of originality. I’m a gorehound when it’s presented well. I appreciate a film that doesn’t pull any punches in terms of taste but you can’t just shoot a scene where a guy cuts off his own dick after getting a piranha attached to it during sex or another where a decapitated head motorboats a blood-soaked chick and think your job is done. Believe it or not, even in goofy junk like this, you need to have a bit of filmmaking skill to keep it interesting, engaging, and entertaining. “Piranha 3DD” is none of the above.

Poor Danielle Panabaker stars Maddy, the stepdaughter of a greedy water park owner (David Koechner) who wants to turn his pool complex into the adult hangout complete with stripper poles and crotch cams on the ladders. Of course, the jackass is using water pumped in from an underground lake filled with man-eating piranha. That’s about it. The piece builds in almost exactly the same way as the first film as warnings about killer fish are ignored and a bunch of people in bathing suits await the gorey climax.

Piranha 3DD
Piranha 3DD
Photo credit: Dimension Films

There are hideously bloody amputations, a horrendous bit of love triangle drama with Maddy and two locals, and a number of cameos, including Gary Busey, Ving Rhames, Christopher Lloyd, and David Hasselhoff, who proves that he can’t even play himself convincingly. A series of outtakes involving Hasselhoff and a trident at the end of the film are the worst thing I’ve seen all year. Seriously. I’d like to wash my eyes out. Contact me if you know how to repress memories.

Outtakes, you say? Why would a movie like “Piranha 3DD” need outtakes? How about because it’s 71 minutes long before the ten minutes of horrendously elongated credits, which probably exist to get to a contract-mandated running time. 71 minutes! And it feels twice as long. I didn’t think I’d ever see a movie that featured Gary Busey getting eaten by piranhas that was so incredibly boring. There’s just nothing engaging here, not even for gorehounds. It’s almost like the creators of the first film bankrolled a second one just to increase the reputation of the original. It’s the only possible explanation for this abomination.

“Piranha 3DD” stars Danielle Panabaker, Matt Bush, David Koechner, Chris Zylka, Katrina Bowden, Gary Busey, Christopher Lloyd, David Hasselhoff, and Ving Rhames. It was directed by John Gulager. It is not rated and opens on June 1st, 2012. It is also available On Demand. content director Brian Tallerico

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I was just attacked by a piranha - help!

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