Jan 142011

Piranha 3D is a fun family film (kidding) that serves up lots of laughs, some unintentional and gruesome deaths. This one will get plenty of views at my place. The 3D effects don’t measure up in comparison with other 3D releases while the audio at least is effective.





Piranha 3D (2010)


Genre(s): Horror
Sony | R – 88 min. – $39.95 | January 11, 2011


Directed by:
Alexandre Aja
Pete Goldfinger & Josh Stolberg (written by)
Ving Rhames, Elisabeth Shue, Christopher Lloyd, Jessica Szohr, Kelly Brook, Adam Scott, Dina Meyer, Richard Dreyfus

Theatrical Release Date: August 20, 2010

Commentary, Featurette
Number of Discs:

Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 6.1)
1080p/Widescreen 2.39
English SDH, French, Spanish
Codec: MVC


In general, people that consider themselves film ‘fans’ typically hate remakes. Sure, we’ve been burned before with some really bad remakes, but in return, we’ve been lucky to get some pretty damn awesome ones (Dawn of the Dead comes right to mind). So when I heard that Piranha was being remade, at first I thought it was a joke. We’re talking about an extreme B film that was essentially trying to ride on the coattails of Jaws success (anyone remember Orca? Oh boy…). But when I heard it was being filmed with 3D in mind, it clicked – this is a money grab. And while I’m OK with it, I was still a bit unsure of if they would try and remake it, or simply borrow the name and idea and run with it. Thankfully, it was the later, and I can say this film is a blast.

Piranha, at heart, has an incredibly stupid plot. Lake Victoria, a random beach community in some state I have no idea (nor care), has an earthquake. From it, crater forms under the Lake which just so happened to have an underground lake running, well, under it. It unleashes thousands of prehistoric Piranha’s (not thought to still exist!) and their sole duty is to eat human flesh.

The cast of food, honestly, I can barely remember their names. They are so bland and uninteresting that you just wait around for them to get eaten up. And boy does that happen a lot.

Jake (McQueen), a local teen, is hot over heels for Kelly (Szohr). She has a clichéd douche bag boyfriend (who you just know will get killed) and Jake just wants to get in her pants. When a ‘Girls Gone Wild’ wannabe rolls into town asking for help around the lake, Jake jumps at the idea. He invited Kelly on to the boat and viewers get treated to titties galore. Lots of titties. Maybe I should stop typing titties, but I’m pretty sure that was the intention of the film – to lure the young audience to Theaters to show them some beautiful tits. Getting back on the subject, as one might expect, its spring break at Lake Victoria. Yep, lots of food just hanging out, drinking, having sex, showing tits… and then it happens. PIRANHAS!

The first 50 minutes are not something I would recommend. It’s filled with characters doing stupid things, a few tits, and generally nothing really happens. But when we hit the 55 minute mark, it’s on! Piranha’s go absolutely nuts and we are treated to some of the finest death scenes of the past year: Arms being chewed off, penis’ getting eaten up (and burped up!), some tit munching and generally an awesome, gruesome 20 minutes. But plot wise… there’s nothing here. It’s just an excuse to show some awesome death scenes and, of course, tits.

If you’re looking for a film to sit down and watch with the family, this is not it. If it’s just a good time with a bucket of popcorn, by all means check this out.


The 3D release of the film also includes a 2D Version on the same disc.

However, due to limited disc space, several feature were dropped (only available in the 2D-only version) like Deleted Scenes/Storyboards, Trailers and TV Spots. Reading other reviews, it’s about 25 minutes of content. Boo. At least toss this up on BD-Live…ya know, that service that was pushed hard in 2008 and now forgotten.

What we do have is:
Audio Commentary with Co-Writer/Director/Product Alexander Aja ad Producer Gregory Lavasseur and Alix Taylor

Don’t’ Scream: Just Swim! (2 Hours; SD) – We’re treated to what seems like feature that’s way too long that delves into every area imaginable about the film. From shooting on water, why they chose 3D, to various cameo’s from the original, that about 25 minutes in to it, you’re going to get bored… and tired. I appreciate that we got this huge making of, but this is just complete overkill. Some of the stuff is repeated several times, and it just drags along.

VIDEO – 3.25/5

Piranha is presented in 2.39:1 on a 50GB Disc. This covers the 3D picture quality.

Oh… wow. After watching Resident Evil, I had hoped Sony would make Piranha look just as good (even though at heart it’s a Weinstein film and they are simply distributing it). But the film is plagued with lots of no-no’s for 3D Conversion: ghosting, poor effects and uneven scenes. My biggest beef is hair. Yes, hair. Every time McQueen showed up, for some reason, his hair (more like a mullet) stood out like crazy. They gave it such a 3D ‘pop’ that it almost looked like it was added it after the fact. Ghosting is another problem which is present a lot in the first 30 or so minutes, but vanishes as the film gets gruesome (perhaps all the water scenes just looked good enough they didn’t mess with it). While the film does look alright, a quick flip to the 2D version shows maybe they should have just stuck with that instead.

AUDIO – 4.5/5

Sony has included a 6.1 DTS MA track for this release. Well, at least they got this right. From the sound of the boat, to the simple sounds of the Piranha’s swimming, this is an immersive experience that sounds great.

OVERALL – 3.5/5

Piranha 3D is a fun family film (kidding) that serves up lots of laughs, some unintentional and gruesome deaths. This one will get plenty of views at my place. The 3D effects don’t measure up in comparison with other 3D releases while the audio at least is effective.


Brad Lowenberg
Published: 01/14/11

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>