Of course it’s way after the fact for me to be writing about Piranha 3D, but if I do it later then it’ll even be more after the fact, so . . .
Remember when Lou Diamond Phillips was in Bats, way back in 99 or so? An interview he did around then, he kind of smiled, said, yeah, he knew exactly the movie he’d signed on for here, but, too, thought his kids would get a kick out of it, and it looked like a romp of a time, so why not? Exactly. Or, I should say: “Exactly,” Elizabeth Shue said. But she’s not the only one having fun in Piranha 3D. There’s Richard Dreyfuss, bringing his Jaws cred in, hamming it up as the blood sacrifice every horror movie needs in order to prime the pumps. There’s Jerry O’Connell doing for Joe Francis what Eisenberg did to/for Zuckerberg. There’s Kelly Brook updating Kelly LeBrock. There’s Eli Roth cameoing it up (that’s a Zappa tribute, not the man himself). There’s Christopher Lloyd giving us all the mock-science a story like this can hold. And there’s a pair of final girls (one of them male, but properly chaste, sick of spring break, all that) at the center of it all, each so innocent and so meant for each other that if either of them didn’t make it through (rather miraculously) this teeth-blender alive, then Hollywood might just step off into the water itself, have to hide its face for shame.
But, to sum up the action? I don’t need to. It’s all right there on the poster: it’s spring break, something Ice-Age-ish has happened, and now all these not-extinct piranhas want to eat everybody. Pretty simple, really; most solid horror is. Where Piranha 3D distinguishes itself, though, it’s where, say, Final Destination distinguished itself, where Ghost Ship (tried to) distinguish itself: the massacre scene. When all the little fishies find all the Spring Breakers playing in the water.
Recipe for disaster? Hardly. Recipe for wonderfulness, more like. There’s blood in the water, and lots of the faces don’t have skin, lots of the legs are only bones now, and all the people you didn’t really like anyway, they pretty much get what’s been coming to them, here. Nothing but fun.
Or, to sum up Piranha 3d even better: even if I were to detail and evaluate each scene, still, that wouldn’t ruin it in the least. Piranha 3D’s not about ‘oh no, didn’t see that coming,’ it’s about the complete satisfcation of having seen that all coming, and having it be just as excellent as you wanted it to be. Also, I should, Kelly Brook and Riley Steele (“Joe Francis”‘s ‘Wild Wild Girls’ might be mermaids. Can think of no other reason for them to have been able to stay under water as long as they did, unless of course it was just for the 3D cameras. Which, speaking of: the throwing-up-over-the-side-of-the-boat bit, right into the audience’s face? It’s as good as that eyeball-on-pickaxe in the My Bloody Valentine remake, and’s there’s for about the same reason: to have done it first, and because it looks cool. And that’s good enough for me.