A year or so ago I reviewed Piranha 3D, making this a lovely time to pick up where I left off with a viewing of the sequel. Will it have more fish, more gore, and more nudity? Hopefully...
As the first one opened with a witty Richard Dreyfus cameo, so we start here (after a quick recap of the previous proceedings) with an appearance by the now terrifying Gary Busey. There's little here that can possibly be as scary as his crazy, off-kilter stare. Here, backwoods Busey gets to bray loco while investigating a cow carcass filled with Piranha eggs. The fishies make short work of him before moving on to the plot proper. By this point we've also had several abuses of 3D, meaning they're living up to the DD claims.
Plot proper involves The Big Wet, a water park run by Chet and his step-daughter Maddie (Dainelle Panabaker) and some water-certified strippers. It's no stretch to say that the "Adult Pool" filled with naked Russian bimbos is an idea that would work in theory, though once you imagine the likely clientele you're very unlikely to want to hop in. Along with Maddie's summer spent managing her whore-filled Water Park, she's evidently on a quest to lose her maidenhead to either her absolute toodbox of an ex-boyfriend or "the other guy," a dweeb who can't swim.
Our Piranha invasion wastes no time in revving up. They first nibble on Katrina Bowden, who hides what all the extras are showing with discreetly suggested nudity while skinny-dipping with her boyfriend, and Travis - wittily devoured in his own sinking shaggin' wagon. She also gets to rock a pretty effective 3D arc of barf. Bowden really gets to shine here in a short set of scenes, especially a
fun sequence involving her and Panabaker on a collapsing dock surrounded
by voracious fishies, followed by her disastrous love scene, heavily
freighted with vagina dentata anxiety. Fun cameos abound. Gary Busey and Christopher Lloyd deliver wacky, plot-expositioning hamminess, Ving
Rhames rocks a pair of rifle legs, and a drunken, womanizing David
Hasselhoff steals the show. He's in on the joke, he just doesn't care. Panabaker is a
charming actress, though her character is a bit of a blank.
Chet the chump, of course, being a sleazeball must immediately start illegally pumping piranha filled aqua into their waterpark... and there the fun begins... The CGI Piranha are awfully cartoony, but that's unimportant. The gore is what's important, and pretty good. The breasts? Plentiful. All of these are shown to excess. This movie is all cheap thrills. When the big swimmer chow-down happens it's as fast and furious as in the first film, if a little... less? Bouncing breasts substitute for the original's pileup of bodies. There's just a little less gore here than in the first one, and it is missed. The humor and "gotcha" 3D shots almost make up for it. There's some good, tasteless shocks. This flick isn't afraid to kill off characters that would be sacred and untouchable in other films... and then show people taking video of one particular corpse with their smartphones. In the end, it's a disposable, fast-food thrill movie, and you feel kind of sorry for Maddie. While she owns 49% of the water park, she'll have 100% of the legal liability. Thank goodness for a fantasy world where you don't have to deal with the repercussions of actions that'll completely nullify your insurance coverage.