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WRONG TURN
Blu-ray Edition

Film review by Chastity Campbell
Technical specs by Michael Jacobson

Starring: Desmond Harrington, Eliza Dushku, Emmanuelle Chiriqui, Jeremy Sisto
Director: Rob Schmidt
Audio: DTS HD 5.1
Video: 1.85:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Features: See Review
Length: 84 Minutes
Release Date: September 15, 2009

“Holy inbreeding, Batman!”

Film ***

Wrong Turn, … at one time or another in this life, everyone will make one.  There you'll be cruising down life's winding road, watching with a lazy eye as the scenery passes by.  The whistle of an errant blue bird fills the air then, “WHAM!”  You smash your vintage Mustang into the back of a Range Rover, and soon find yourself in the middle of backwoods Virginia hell, fighting for your life.

This movie was great; I enjoyed every single minute of it.  It's a “B” movie, you say?  Well yes, I noticed that…and still loved every minute of it. 

Wrong Turn scared me at just the right moments, kept me wondering who was next, and how they were going to bite the dust. 

Desmond Harrington's character is on his way to a job interview when an accident forces him to take a detour through the backwoods of Virginia.  He finds out really quickly that  his job interview isn't the only thing he's about to lose, and I'm not talking about the fries he ate for lunch, either!

Eliza Dushku, whom some of you might know as the five by five Slayer Faith from TV's Buffy The Vampire Slayer, stakes her claim as this movies leading lady right off the bat.   She's smart, quick with the wit, and strong in the fight to stay alive.  Which is more than I can say for the friends she brought into the mountains with her.

Dushku's group is in the hills for a little fun and excitement, when they run over some wire and get a flat.  Harrington speeds around a bend in the dirt road and in true slasher flick style, wipes out the group's only means of transportation.

The cute and sexy kids are always the first to die, and die they do as one girl finds out that flossing with homemade barbed wire is not the way to prevent gingivitis!

Now let's be honest with ourselves here folks, this kind of movie isn't everyone's cup of tea.  Those people who choose to watch a slasher flick know what they are going to get when they pop in that DVD and push play.  A lot of blood, (hopefully) guts, (the really messy on the floor kind), and hot bodies (at least they are hot, until they are turned into cold dead stiffs!)

There is always a semi-contrived plot to keep you interested as the people run from one destination to another, over and over again.  In the 70's they used a lot of really drunk/drugged up sex to fill in the plot holes, but this one does at least stay somewhat believable in terms of the situations that people sometimes find themselves in. 

Dushku and Harrington both put forth a lot of effort making this movie.  Eliza's character is stronger, than a lot of females in slasher movies tend to be.  She's afraid and you see that, but at the same time she uses her fight or flight to determine when to deal a blow and when to go!

Now switching gears slightly, when I hear the name Stan Winston associated with a movie, my adrenaline surges, I sit back and try to contain the giddiness that threatens to burst forth.  Winston is one of the great special effects masters out there.   His early work I believe was his best, but in the past few years, he has surprised me with his creative and innovative approach to movie horror. 

His mountain men are gruesome and grotesque, which helps you get wrapped up in the terror each of the characters endure while being chased.   The scenes which feature characters being killed were mentally and visually horrifying.  Believe me, one girl gets a splitting headache that a whole bottle of Aleve won't touch!

The direction could have been better with this film and that might have helped it excel beyond a “B+” movie in my eyes.  The mountain men were sluggish and at times left a lot to be desired in terms of the fear they supposedly evoked. 

Go ahead and take this disk for a spin, but be sure you get off before making a wrong turnm or the next sound you hear might be “Dueling Banjos”…be afraid, be very afraid!

Video ** *

There is a lot of dark sequences in this movie...literally and figuratively...but thankfully, high definition delivers on those kinds of images a little better than standard DVD.  There is a bit more clarity this time around, and although some sequences still render with a touch of murkiness, the crispness is a little cleaner, and a bit more detail comes through in low level lighting.

Audio *** 1/2

The only thing better than 5.1 sound in a horror film is when it's uncompressed, and Wrong Turn makes solid use of the DTS HD track.  You won't feel safe in your living room as the surrounds will keep you glancing over your shoulder.  The dynamic range is quite strong...when the action heats up, you'll definitely be shrinking in your seat!

Features ***

Director commentary tracks by Rob Schmidt and stars Desmond Harrington and Eliza Dushku are included for your listening pleasure.  Learn a little more about the stars behind the characters, as well as what made the director so passionate about this film.

Deleted scenes and a poster concept gallery are few but fun to watch.

The “Making Of Wrong Turn” featurette takes you behind the scenes and into the action, while “Eliza Dushku: Babe In The Woods” gives you an up close and personal meet and greet with one of the movies stars.

The “Stan Winston” featurette is a sit down chat with the man himself, and a chance to look through the eyes of this master creator, so you can experience what motivates and propels his ideas into reality.

“Fresh Meat: The Wounds Of Wrong Turn” is really cool to watch.  So much effort goes into the special effects of every movie done, yet there's always some new trick to the trade you can learn when the director yells “ACTION!”.  Rounding out is the original trailer.

Summary:

It's a “B+,” movie without much of a plot and a lot of blood and carnage!  So what are you waiting for?  Pick it up as soon as it's available in your area.  It's great fun…trust me, would I steer you wrong?!

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