'Wrong Turn 2: Dead End - Unrated'
(Erica Leerhsen, Henry Rollins, et al / DVD / NR / 2007 / 20th Century Fox)
Overview: Retired military commander Colonel Dale Murphy (Henry Rollins) hosts the simulated post-apocalyptic reality show where participants are challenged to survive a remote West Virginia wasteland. But the show turns into a nightmarish showdown when each realizes they are being hunted by an inbred family of cannibals determined to make them all dinner!
DVD Verdict: If you enjoy watching humans get tortured, dismembered, and then cannibalized, then get ready to be happy. If that isn't something you crave then there really is no need to soldier on through my review because that is what Wrong Turn 2's target audience is hoping for, and they get it here in relatively sleek fashion. If you consider yourselves among the hardcore fans of such trash then you're in luck as I have designed my review to consider this film within the context of its flawed but popular sub-genre and I think it is better than most movies of its ilk.
To think that this is also a direct-to-dvd release is impressive as well, as it is not only superior to the quality level attained in the traditional direct-to-video/dvd release, but it is also free to be as violent as it wants to without relying on the broader market to justify it's wider release. For that alone, the film should get some credibility among the torture porn addicts.
Evidently, some toxic waste wound up entering the water supply in this region where some folks are filming a reality television show about survival. The toxic waste had depleted the wildlife in the area quite a while ago and at the same time it also began influencing the genetics of the humans who stayed in the area. Because they had nothing to eat and because they have evolved into deformed semi-humanoids, they soon developed into cannibals who hunt down regular folks who happen to enter the area. You can see how this might pose a problem for the reality television cast and crew. Anyway, these television people would be dead, eaten, and the film would've been over in 20 minutes if Henry Rollins wasn't around to take some of these cannibals out.
That brief summary sets the stage for some gruesome and at times hilarious fun. People are eaten raw and cooked, people are blown to smithereens, people are cut in half and those parts are cut in halves too and so forth, and some people are thrown through some kind of giant grinding machine thing etc. It's all really comical if you have the sense of humor and stomach for this sort of thing. Some times the special effects are not as seamless as I would've hoped, but overall the gore isn't really meant to be believable. At least believability was not the top priority.
The cannibals looked and sounded great. The camera angles and cuts are actually pretty impressive in spurts and the gratuitous nudity was as welcome as always in these sort of films (albeit it was more brief than I had hoped). Other than Henry Rollins, the cast includes the dude who played Jason in Freddy Vs. Jason as the leader of the deformed cannibals and Erica Leerhsen, who plays a very attractive vegan who unfortunately keeps her clothing on. One thing I liked about this film is that I wasn't sure who the lead character was until an hour or so into the movie, so basically anyone could've died at any time. That made it a bit less predictable than I expected.
It's funny because I watched 28 Weeks Later for the second time right after I watched Wrong Turn 2 and it made me realize even more that lack of quality is just not a viable excuse anymore in the horror genre, but yet the marketing of films like this still persists. Torture porn, gorno...it is what it is. I guess what it is now justifies a mere direct-to-dvd release. Maybe that isn't such a bad thing. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:
More blood, more guts: The making of 'Wrong Turn 2'
Making gore look good featurette
On location with P-Nut featurette
Cast & crew audio commentaries and much more!