Sunday, September 12, 2010

Piranha 3D

Today the sun was shining, and I leapt out of bed, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, to lollop down to Causeway Bay to catch the 10 am showing of Piranha 3D.  It feels morally dissolute to be watching a film in daylight hours, doubly so when you're foregoing the only opportunity in a rainy weekend to see the sun, but the double allure of B-movie shlock and cheap tickets was irresistable.

Piranha 3D (or "Pie Ran HAAA" as I gleefully mispronounce it to annoy my girlfriend) seems to have an unreasonably qualified cast: Elisabeth Shue, Ving Rhames, and the actor who played the fat kid in Stand By Me, apparently.  It also has a lot of young, tanned flesh.  Well, the plot is that the eponymous piranhas are attacking young idiots at an Arizonian Spring Break, but if I didn't know better, I'd think the first half hour was just an excuse to have mostly naked women (and semi-naked men, for, like, y'know, the ladies) cavorting on screen.

And then for no good reason, Kelly Brook's body double and some other bird with blonde hair and enhanced decolletage* go for a swim under a glass-bottomed boat. Well, I can think of a few good reasons. Goodness me. It felt like The Expendables, but with all the olive-drab clad soldiers replaced with jiggling silicone breasts.

As might be expected, the piranhas turn up, and eat almost everyone.  Before then, there's a lot of underwater shots that come to nothing, which may have been to build up some putative sense of dread, but that seems rather too high an explanation for a film that has Eli Roth as the master of ceremonies for a wet t-shirt competition on a floating stage.  The 3D isn't very obtrusive (in other words, there's a lack of LOTS of THINGS suddenly moving TOWARDS THE SCREEN to show off the FACT that they've spent money on THREE-DIMENSIONAL cameras), but there are some good artistic decisions - such as the one deciding to portray a glorious technicolour yawn in glorious three dimensions.

The piranhas themselves veer between looking vaguely convincing, and like expensive computer generated fish, and the same could be said for the make-up - there are some fairly disgustingly gory sights at the beach, and also some utterly daft renderings of people with missing legs.  I kept wondering if it was in bad taste to be laughing at all the gore on display, but then I had paid fifty-five dollars for a ticket, so I guess I was committed.

I think anyone who decides to watch a film about piranhas in THREE DIMENSIONS may need to be committed, of course.

There may be something to said about how this film has a moral agenda it's trying to push - basically don't go to lakes in America and try to enjoy yourself, regardless of age or gender - but I suppose it's fairly even-handed, in that as well as all the women in bikinis being savaged by the evil fish, it also has a man screaming
they took my penis!
before expiring.  That's balance, right?

* Sorry, I meant boobs. Was trying to be polite, ended up being inaccurate, because from the definition of decolletage, it only exists when you're actually wearing something.


Post a Comment