Wrong Turn 3: Left For Dead (2009)

Wrong Turn isn’t exactly a big business franchise but it must have made a decent enough imprint on someone’s wallet for them to bust out a further adventure of the mutant killer hillbillies. The first was a fairly low key success, the second was a gore-hound’s wet dream and a whole lot of fun. When I heard another movie was on the cards, I wasn’t appalled. Wrong Turn is an easy series to get right, you get your faceless group of Red-Jumpers, take a healthy smattering of arrows, chuck around lashings of the red stuff, and bobs your sequel. In theory.

Most of the plot for this movie is entirely incidental, it is also a trip down a well-trodden path towards Yawnsville. Taking tropes directly from Con Air, a number of criminals are off-roaded by ‘Three Finger’ and his (somehow) adolescent daughter (who was born at the end of the second movie) who have set traps in the woods that are as ridiculous as those in Simon Says and as convoluted as those in Saw. The crims, along with a few hostages, are forced to walk somewhere whilst being hunted by the cannibals. You even have the same characters from Con Air: The ex serviceman wrongly imprisoned after a bar fight, the Latino undercover operative, the petty criminal there for comic relief, it really is a shameless rip-off. Factor in the Bulgarian shoot and a fully British cast whose idea of an American accent is low-talking and squinting like Clint or John and it screams of Z-movie rubbishness. Tamer Hassan is the most high profile actor in the bunch, after his few roles alongside Danny Dyer in some Brit-crime capers, but is at his worst here. He meanders his way through a whole ‘rogues gallery’ of accents, raging from Cok-er-nee wideboy through to Mexican bandido, whilst mugging and gurning like a child in a gory school play. I’m a firm believer that almost every film suffers from a severe lack of Henry Rollins, but none more noticeably than this movie. Hassan just doesn’t fit the kick ass, square-jawed glove.

Speaking of the gore, there are some really nice set-ups in here. If you’ve seen the second Wrong Turn offering, then you know that one of the high points of Joe Lynch‘s gore epic is when one chick gets sliced in half. Its a classic moment and a beautifully well done effect. Declan O’Brien attempts to emulate that moment here, but musses it up with cheap CGI, ripped straight from an N64 game. If you know me well enough then you will know how against CGI blood I am, sure there are times when CGI blood can work, but someone needs to reign this special effects dude in. Every major set piece that shows any potential to appease my bloodlust is caked in unrealistic reddish pixels. Is it really too expensive to splash about some corn syrup? Also, for some reason, there is no actual driving in this, every scene in a car is so poorly green screened it almost made me retch.

With only two cannibals remaining from the last outing, the ante is insufficiently upped. I sincerey doubt anyone is going to believe that a superhuman mutant with three-fingers who can’t even articulate speech, and has a predilection for jacking off in the bushes, can effectively take down a gang of armed badasses with shotguns. I just don’t buy it.

Sure, there are things to like in here too though. There is a nice scene in ‘Three-Fingers’ torture shack that doesn’t try to burden us with laboured explanations. The whole climax is excellent fun, as long as you aren’t a stickler with the suspension of disbelief and enjoy poorly shot, acted and choreographed scenes of OTT violence. A massive amount of the dialogue is unintentionally hilarious too, making Wrong Turn 3 a decent party watch with a few beers, if you have fully exhausted the previous flicks.

Rating: ★★★★★☆☆☆☆☆

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