Tuesday, December 21, 2010

By All Means, Go In The Water: Piranha 3-D

Greetings, friendly readers! I have returned after almost a year's absence with a new Fashion Victim post for you. I apologize for my beyond-sporadic posting, but I just haven't seen a lot of horror films where I can actually talk about the costuming.

No matter; last night I saw a movie so awesomely awful, so hilariously, unashamedly tasteless, that I had to share it with you despite the fact that I can really only mention the LACK of costumes.

Man, I love Alexandre Aja. You can always count on him to squint at the line of tastefulness, class and subtlety, and without missing a beat just drive right through that sucker with a Mack truck. Such is the case with Piranha 3-D, a remake of the original 1978 Joe Dante film.

Okay, so the plot, like I even need to tell you: earthquake opens seismic rift in lake -

- clearing the way for thousands of prehistoric killer fish to attack obnoxious partiers during Spring Break. Good times.

I never got the whole concept of Spring Break. Let me give you a little history. Not so long ago, I was an Adult-Movie Reviewer. Hey, the pay was decent, and it was educational. Every so often I would get one of those Girls Gone Wild-type vids to review, and they were always subtitled "Spring Break Edition." Reviewing just one of those things was the Eighth Circle Of Hell.

That's the one where they force you to watch 3-hour long unedited footage of loud, insecure, attention-seeking girls flashing the camera and sticking their tongues in each others' mouths, with no actual sex, and then another 4-6 hours of "bonus footage." It was mind-numbing, and instilled in me a great aversion towards screaming, topless college girls.

Now, I haven't appeared in even a one-piece bathing suit since 1987, nor will I ever do so again in my life, but I have a pretty fair idea of what the college kids are wearing on the beach or lake these days. Seems to me that not all of them do their shopping in the pole-dancers' section of Frederick's Of Hollywood, and that not all swimwear consists of a series of one-inch wet-look lycra triangles held together with single-strand thread.

There is not a single one-piece or tankini in this movie. Not one. I'm not just talking the pr0nstar girls. It's the "regular vacationers" too.

Okay, so of course we have the usual cast of characters. Elisabeth Shue as the tough mama sheriff -

her teenaged nerd son, who you can tell is different from the Spring Break fratheads because he's wearing a Pixies shirt -

Christopher Lloyd, typecast as the deranged eccentric scientist -

his younger counterpart, the cute, heroic seismologist -

Insanely obnoxious Girls Gone Wild-style pr0n director and his hott bikini girls -

 a seemingly endless sea of nearly-naked college girls whose sole ambition in life (well, in this movie anyway) is to pop their tops -

Ving Rhames, because they needed a gruff badass cop -

 - and Richard Dreyfuss, who absolutely cannot catch a break when it comes to water-related activities. (Note to readers: Don't Go There. I deliberately did NOT say "water sports," but I know some of you are headed over that way anyway.)

There is so much in the realm of exposed breasts, legs chewed down to skeletons, WTF-you-don't-have-time-for-that situations, booty shots, wonky science, scenery chewing moments, completely gratuitous use of 3-D, and the inevitable Stupid Ass People Getting Their Skin Chewed Off, that I was literally rolling on the floor laughing.

I'm sure most of you are very glad you were not there with me, because I was talking back to the movie like a madwoman. "Haven't ANY of you seen Jaws?"

I mean, at one point, ol' Ving and Elisabeth are trying to save the dumbass tourists, who won't get out of the water, by shooting their guns at the fish. In the middle of a horde of screaming, splashing people. At thousands of flesh-eating piranhas, attempting to pick them off one by one. Brilliant idea, that's really safe for the tourists.

And when they run out of ammo, Ving grabs a boat engine propeller and starts making a piranha smoothie. Awww yeah.

Also, when they blow up a boat, one of the characters says "Look, they're all dead!" and points to about twenty dead fish floating in the water. Everyone rejoices, having defeated the menace, despite the fact that it is a huge-ass lake and Chris Lloyd already told them there are thousands of these things.

Oh yeah, and the pr0no director gets his, er, man-parts bitten off, and then in case we missed the sight of the dismembered organ sinking to the bottom of the lake, we get a shot of the fish spitting it back out. That Aja, what a classy director dude.

(No, I will spare you that screencap.)

Biological fact: wieners do not float, apparently, nor do flesh-eating fish find them tasty. I'm sure if you tossed a hot dog to a shark, it would totally reject it.

Now, you're reading all of the above and thinking, man, the Costuminatrix totally hated this movie, avoid at all costs. You would be wrong. This is AWESOME. This is awesome in much the same way the Two Thousand Maniacs! remake was awesome.

I have not been so grossed out, or laughed so hard at a movie in a long, long time. If this is any indication, I also saw Black Swan the same night, and I would give the Oscar to Piranha 3-D instead, it was so incredibly great.

Unless they can work in stripper-ballerina bikinis and have Natalie Portman devoured by ancient killer fish. I could get behind that.


Anonymous said...

That was hilarious. I think I'll pretend all spring break flicks end in a massive piranha bloodbath.

Tenebrous Kate said...

OK, *NOW* I am really sorry I missed this in the theatres. Like, "totally kicking myself" sorry. You should be on Aja's payroll ;) I am definitely short-listing this nasty little film and dubbing it a must-watch!

Word verification: BLESS. As in "bless your black little heart" :)

The Vicar of VHS said...

It's taken me a while to get here, but I'm glad I came--I would have totally given this movie a miss otherwise. Now I have to see it at least once, based solely on your recommendation, which I trust implicitly thanks to a little something that rhymes with "Burbulence Tree: Chevy Kettle." :D

Word verification: "inavy." As in "iNavy--the next generation in personal water-based fighting forces!"

The Costuminatrix said...

Major: What makes you think they DON'T? I bet they just edit that part out of all those "Girls Gone Wild" vids.

Kate: You and the Baron NEED to see this. It is beyond tasteless. It takes crassness to hitherto-unseen heights. And it has Eli Roth hosing down screaming bikini girls before he gets his face bitten off.

Vicar: would this other movie be the one full of "special connections?" Piranha 3-D has some pretty special connections, too. Mostly fish connected to people by their sharp nasty teeth, but still.