REVIEWED BY BOZZ
Wrong Turn 2: Dead End (2006)
Running Time: 92 mins
Without a doubt Wrong Turn 2 is a genre classic. It is awesome for so many reasons. Joe Lynch has stated the film was made under the pre tense of being a homage to the great slasher sequels of the 1980’s and without a doubt the film makers triumphed on every level. The body count is doubled. The film feels more elaborate despite being a DTV effort and the twists and turns are plentiful. None of the core cast return but don’t let that put you off. Joe Lynch knows his slasher films and has a great time fucking with the audience expectations.
The plot of Wrong Turn 2 is larger in scope than that of the first film. Instead of teenagers in the woods we have a reality show. Think Survivor, only it’s set in the West Virginian woods and not a tropical paradise. Several young folk are competing for a $100,000 prize if they can manage to survive for three days in the wilderness with only their wits to get them by. Needless to say these guys don’t even get that far. Yes our beloved inbred family are back. This time Three Finger has brought along his bro, sister and their two kids and some pretty sick shit plays out amongst the blood letting.
The cast of the film is great and is made up of a ton of genre faves. Aleksa Palladino is our lead, Mara. A city chick who works on the show but is called upon to become a contestant after a legendary opening sequence finds the original contestant eliminated. Final Destination allumni Texas Battle and Crystal Lowe bring the sew appeal to the show as the jock with a heart of gold Jake and the foxy, cunning and fame hungry Elena. Henry Rollins steals the film as Dale, an ex marine who acts as the shows presenter. He really gets to tear some shit up and things go to hell. Erica Leerhsen gives a solid show as the frosty and bitchy Nina. While Daniella Alonso and Steve Braun fill out the cast as Amber a marine on home leave and Jonesy, a skater dude and the joker of the group.
One of the films greatest strengths is it’s screenplay. Nothing plays out like you would expect it to. As the film reaches the end of act 1 it becomes clear audiences will be shocked. Expectations in regards to who will live or die are blow apart. No one is safe in the film. It’s a refreshing change and one which is welcome in the genre. To this day, 2011 people, writers and film makers still pander to the old arc types and genre conventions. It’s stale. No one wants to go and see a film and know within the first five minutes who is going to live and who is going to die. Major praise for Lynch and his writers for having the balls to try something different.
The kills in the film are insane. The first film was brutal but in Wrong Turn 2 things just get crazy. In fact the film is so gory it losses it’s menace. That’s the only bad point and I suppose it’s rendered a moot point by how how fun the film is overall but needless to say it strays into comic over the top violence at times. It would be a shame to mention any of the kills so I won’t. It’s a safe bet all gore hounds will be satisfied though!
Joe Lynch makes a good decision by setting most of the film in the day time. Another broken convention which lends the film a unique look. Things seem much more real and if it wasn’t for the OTT kills I guess the film would be much more terrifying. There is also a small bit of back story which is required of any great sequel which gives the audience more insight into the inbreds and how they came to be.
The back story is a smart move. While only explained is dialogue exposition it lends the film some weight and creates an instant mythology for the series. Therefore bringing the franchise to the same level as the Friday The 13ths or Elm Street movies in so far as the killer or killers have a solid back story and in doing so opens up the universe of the film to explore further details down the line.
Lynch stated he had an idea for Wrong Turn 3 which would have had something to do with what happens with the survivors of the films and how come no commandos have ever come down on the inbreds and wiped them out. It was an interesting concept. Sadly Fox didn’t ask Lynch to return or he declined. Whatever it’s a shame because Wrong Turn 3 marks a sudden decline in quality despite a interesting story. Yet like all great franchises I guess you could argue Wrong Turn can wear it’s lesser entries like badges of honor. The fan base is still there. Wrong Turn 4, a prequel to the first film, is due out this October. Could be interesting. Yet it’s from the team behind part 3. Watch this space I guess!
[pt-filmtitle]Wrong Turn 2[/pt-filmtitle]