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Piranha 3D has enough gore and nudity for 10 films

Published: Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Updated: Friday, May 17, 2013 12:05

I loved every gory second of Piranha 3D. The story is a complete mess and the acting is mostly terrible, yet, from start to end, Piranha 3D has been designed to make its audience squirm and laugh throughout all 90 minutes of its running time.

The movie starts when someone accidently drops a single bottle of beer in a lake in Arizona. The camera follows the bottle to the very bottom, where it adds enough weight to the sea floor to cause it to crack. The crack releases prehistoric piranhas on the citizens of the small Arizona town, which is about to have their annual spring break bash at that lake.

The smart thing that this movie does is it waits for a long while before everything goes insane. Sure, a person here and there gets gobbled up by the man-eating piranhas, but the movie is far more interested in parading naked women in front of the screen for the entire first hour. Those naked women are models Kelly Brook and Riley Steele, and they partake in a sequence that can only be described as underwater ballet…without clothes.

Apart from the seismic events and nakedness, this movie contains a strange hodgepodge of plots from other movies mixed together to create pure chaos. Elizabeth Shue (Hamlet 2) is a cop whose partner is Ving Rhames (Dawn of the Dead). She has three kids, one of which looks like an alternate world Zac Efron. Alternate world Efron likes a girl that looks like an alternate world Vanessa Hudgens. Efron gets a job as location scout for the director of a line of Girls Gone Wild knock-offs, played by a very over-the-top Jerry O'Connell (Tomcats). Alternate world Efron and Hudgens end up on the boat with the Girls Gone Wild knock-off crew. Underwater naked ballet happens. Shue finds the dreaded piranhas. Adam Scott (Party Down) shows up as a seismologist that is investigating the crack in the ocean floor. Insanity happens…Christopher Lloyd also shows up for two scenes.

That is sort of a Sparknotes of the movie's plot, what I did not describe for you is the final 30 minutes, in  which insane violence occurs as the piranhas start attacking the teens in the lake. Those scenes are amazing callbacks to the violence of old ‘80s B-movies that it is alone worth the price of the admission.

The movie is not exactly a great example of what 3D can do. It was not filmed in 3D, instead it was converted to the format after it was finished. While the majority of the movie does not do anything great with 3D, there is one shot with a certain thing (something that I cannot spoil) floating in the water. This thing is eaten by one of the piranha, only to be coughed back towards the audience. I will not lie, I winced when I saw it.

Again, I should add that, like Predators, this is not a film for everyone. It probably is a film for no one except people with sick senses of humor. People who wanted to see what happened to a certain character after the events of Steven Spielberg's Jaws (do not let anyone spoil the cameo of this actor) will get a laugh out of the opening scene. The 5 out of 5 rating is just for pure enjoyment. So take a chance on it, just do not take anyone that passes out at the sight of blood or has any morals at all.


5 out of 5 Miner Picks

Matthew Munden may be reached at

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