Wrong Turn (2003)
US (dir. Rob Schmidt)
Cast: Eliza Dushku, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Jeremy Sisto, Lindy Booth, Desmond Harrington, Kevin Zegers
Synopsis: Six people find themselves trapped in the woods of West Virginia, hunted down by cannibalistic mountain men grossly disfigured through generations of in-breeding.
Review: I was suprised to discover that “Wrong Turn” was made before the “The Hills Have Eyes” remake. I was fully intending to bash “Wrong Turn” because so much of it seemed similar to the “The Hills Have Eyes” remake. Therefore I have concluded that the “The Hills Have Eyes” remake is largely responsible for liberally borrowing “some” aspects of “Wrong Turn” and not vice versa as I had originally thought. Given that information, I must say that “Wrong Turn” borrows somewhat from the original “The Hills Have Eyes” in that it is a story about backwoods living, in-breeding mutants who have for some reason or another, resorted to eating human flesh and killing off vacationers/backbackers/hikers/campers/bad drivers for both sport and for food. I really enjoyed the opening credits which flash a bunch of news clippings about rumours of in-bred forest people and missing people, but unfortunately that’s all the background information we get on the mutant villains.
The story is pretty standard, bunch of campers stranded in the woods due to car trouble, but the interesting twist is that a non-camper joins their group when he accidentally crashes his car into their already broken down car (ha!). He’s a quiet-spoken guy who seems almost way too calm at times. In fact, I was actually starting to wonder if he was a member of the mutant group or if he worked for them somehow, because he always seemed so calm and collected when maneuvering through the forest and helping save the campers. Instead he turns out to be the atypical pretty boy who saves the day by rescuing one of the camper ladies (sexy Eliza Dushku) and killing off the mutant cannibal men.
“Wrong Turn” is, despite the gore and the one scene of tension, a pretty boring movie when it comes down to it. You can totally tell who will die and who will surive. The final girl practically has FINAL GIRL stamped on her forehead as soon as she enters her first scene. Really, it is THAT obvious. You’d probably just be better off seeing the “The Hills Have Eyes” remake to be honest. “Wrong Turn” offers nothing that is truly shocking and the ending is a bit lame and so predictable it’s almost like you just wish the mutants would finally eat the pretty boy rescuer and his new lady friend just to piss off the audience a little. It’s very watchable, but very forgettable. Also, I’m not sure if anyone else will notice this, but all the people in this movie are wearing the most gaudy mid-1990’s style clothing imaginable (think midriff bearing string tees, scrunchies, track pants rolled at the hips and plastic flower necklaces). I can’t imagine how Georgina Yarhi (the costume designer) thought dressing the actors/actresses in such terrible clothing would be passable in a movie made in the early/mid 2000’s. Plus add the fact that Jeremy Sisto is in this movie and you’ll practically convince yourself this movie was made in 1996.